• National Grid Pylon Maintenace

    National Grid will be undertaking maintenace on the pylon in our car park during July. This will mean the closure of part of the car park and so limited parking while work is undertaken. Closures:- 9-12 July & 26-27 July We will keep you updated about any changes.

    • 21 Jun 2021
  • Thanks To You

    Over the past 26 years, grants from the National Lottery have helped to make RSPB nature reserves even better places for wildlife and people. That's why the RSPB are saying a #ThanksToYou by taking part in the National Lottery’s Open Week campaign, which highlights the vital contribution National Lottery players make to supporting good causes.
    In 2002 we were able to open our visitor centre and reserve…
    • 31 May 2021
  • Insects galore

    Spent some time enjoying the sunshine yesterday and I was not the only one insects were loving it too! Picked up so many species in short stretch of hedge just outside visitor centre accompanied by cuckoo, common tern, blackcap, bullfinch and Mediterranean gull calls, gulls hawking for insects and red kite drifting over.
    I'm still working on identifying many of the insects but thought I'd share some with you, so if…
    • 28 May 2021
  • Covid-19 update

     Welcome back! We’re excited to have many of our facilities OPEN from 17 May 9am-5pm for your visit!
     Car park
     Visitor Centre staffed Welcome Point
     Nature reserve trails, including seasonal trail
     Take away refreshments and some of our outdoor seating area (we still need to cut some vegetation). Card payments preferred.
     We’re excited to be able to open our hides
    You’ll notice we’ve made a few…
    • 16 May 2021
  • Rye Meads Half term events 2021

    Rye Meads Half Term Events

    Sunday 30 May – Friday 4 June & Sunday 6 June


    Self-led Migration Trail

    Sunday 30 May – Friday 4 June & Sunday 6 June 9 am-4.00 pm

    Join Sunny the swallow on migration from South Africa to Rye Meads, 6,000 miles!  Face the perils and see the sights as you cross the Sahara Desert, Europe and the English Channel and arrive ready to breed at Rye Meads!

    Closed Saturday 5 June

    • 12 May 2021
  • Covid Update 6 January 2021

    In line with #lockdown regulations some of our facilities are closed.
    Our Trails , carpark and toilets are open for your essential daily exercise and to enjoy a dose of nature.
    We know how important getting into nature is and the positive impact it has on your health and wellbeing. So if you are a local come for a walk around our trails and enjoy the nature on offer. When visiting site, please follow social distance…
    • 6 Jan 2021
  • Happy New Year 2021

    Great start to 2021 Year List, Peregrine up on the pylon, male blackcap and redwing in the car park. What's the first bird on your 2021 year list, do let us know! Hoping yesterdays little weasel visits again to start off mammals as well, bonus.

    • 1 Jan 2021
  • Tier 4

    We are now in a Tier 4 Area
    Come and visit your local nature reserve and enjoy the redwings and fieldfares feasting on hawthorn berries and get your daily dose of fresh air . We know how important getting into nature is during this difficult time and the positive impact nature has on our health and wellbeing. The reserve trails are open for you to enjoy following social distance guidance (one household or to meet…
    • 20 Dec 2020
  • Tier change

    We are now in a Tier 3 Area


    We know how important getting into nature during this difficult time is for our health and wellbeing.


    Here at Rye Meads Fieldfares and Redwing are feasting on the hawthorn berries and starlings and yellowhammers are roosting in the reedbed.

    We also have lots of muddy puddles for jumping in for little ones... or big ones too!


    Come and visit your local nature reserve and enjoy the autumn colours…

    • 17 Dec 2020
  • Rye Meads Winter Opening Times



    From Monday 24 Nov to end of Feb:

    Car park open (9am-4pm, £4 for non-members)

    Staffed, Covid-secure, outdoor welcome point (10am-4pm)

    Trails open (9am-4pm)

    Toilets open (10am-4pm)

    Take away refreshments available to purchase, card payment preferred


    Hides and Visitor Centre closed

    Reserve remains closed on Saturdays

    Please note: Rye Meads will be closed 24, 25, 26 Dec and 4 and…

    • 22 Nov 2020
  • November Lockdown

    We know that for many of you, Rye Meads reserve provides enjoyment and solace in the natural world throughout these challenging times. In line with Government guidance on essential, daily exercise outdoors, during #SecondLockdown, our car park, trails and toilets remain open for you to visit. Please follow all current Government guidance around social distancing, who you can visit with, hygiene and follow all signage…

    • 4 Nov 2020
  • Sightings Highlights - mid Sept to mid Oct

    Sightings over the past few weeks have included Stonechat and Whinchat out on the meadow.

    From Draper there have been sightings of  Jack Snipe, Snipe, Green Sandpiper and Wigeon.

    Photo: Snipe by Keith Bedford

    Waterfowl numbers have been building up nicely with 120 Teal seen and good numbers of Gadwall and Shoveller.

    Photo: Gadwall by Keith Bedford

    Visitors have has nice views of Goldcrests on the trail up to Draper…

    • 16 Oct 2020
  • Wood sandpiper

    We currently have a wood sandpiper visible from the Draper hide.

    We have opened the Draper hide for visiting but there are some restrictions on use: please follow social distancing and wear face covering, maximum capacity 3 people or 1 family group, maximum stay 45 min. 

    The wood sandpiper is regularly joined by green sandpiper (up to 6) and snipe (up to 6), we also had a common sandpiper last week, so being able to spot…

    • 25 Aug 2020
  • Wild Challenge at Rye Meads

    Come to Rye Meads with the family to try out some of the RSPB’s wild challenge activities.

    Have your phone ready and look out for the QR codes on signs around the reserve. 

    You can find links to activities such as bird watching, matching natures colours, being a nature detective – finding out what animals are about and looking at tress, leaves and seeds.

    It’s free and could be the start of a whole outdoor…

    • 9 Aug 2020
  • National Grid

    Please be aware. National Grid will be undertaking work on the pylon in our car park for a period between 10 August and 24 September. While this work is being undertaken we will have to close a large part of our car park so parking will be very limited. National Grid will provide us with a weeks notice, which we of course will pass on to you. We are waiting to hear how long the work is to last and we will update this…
    • 5 Aug 2020
  • July Highlights - The return of monthly sightings!

    Hi Everyone,

    Bryony here... the Visitor Experience Manager at RSPB Rye Meads. It’s been a little while since we shared with you some sightings so with August here we though now would be a good time to let you know what was spotted around the reserve in July.

    We’ve had a good array of warblers making themselves known out on the reserve with White Throat, Lesser White Throat, Chiff Chaff, Black Cap, Garden, Reed and…

    • 3 Aug 2020
  • New River Bridge closed.

    Monday 20 July to Thursday 24 December 2020
    We have been notified that Thames Water will be starting work on the New River bridge along Rye Road on Monday. The work will see the existing bridge demolished and replaced. The new bridge will allow two-way traffic and will be stronger.
    There will be a pedestrian walkway available for access.
    The diversion for vehicles takes you down Essex Road, Pindar Road, Normandy…
    • 15 Jul 2020
  • Insects

    Its a great time of year to look out for insects, from butterflies to bugs, beetles and bees. So when you visit the reserve don't forget to check out the vegetation next to the trail, there are many insects lurking with in. A clump of bramble flowers area a great source of nectar, so often full of bees of many species. Why not have a got at identifying them?
    Please share any insect pictures you get on your visit with…

    • 15 Jun 2020
  • Road Closure

    We are checking in to reports that Rye Road is going to be closed at the bridge over the new river for 5 days, if you are thinking of visiting Sunday or Monday please be aware. Thanks

    • 10 Jun 2020
  • Rye Meads Open

    Our visitor centre, shop, café, toilets and hides remain closed. Some of our trails and car park are now open Sunday-Wednesday, but please be mindful that it has limited capacity. We urge our visitors to please stay local to your nearest reserves and greenspaces.  Anyone choosing to visit should observe all current government advice around social distancing and hygiene.

    • 7 Jun 2020
  • A focus on kestrels

    A focus on Kestrels at Rye Meads

    Rye Meads has had many years of success with kestrel nest boxes, with pylons proving to be popular, if sometimes a bit problematical, locations. Traditionally used is the box at the kingfisher hide, with National Grid workers adding another box as the initial one became dilapidated. So, two boxes can now be seen in this location and bizarrely Tawny Owl decided to nest there in 2017 and…

    • 15 May 2020
  • Update 11 May 2020

    Despite some very slight changes in lockdown restrictions, the reserve remains closed to the public for now. Our priority is to ensure that we only re-open when we have everything in place to keep our members, visitors, volunteers and employees safe.

    We must also make sure that the wildlife that calls our site home is ready to receive attention after a couple of months completely on its own. With reports of rare species…

    • 11 May 2020
  • April 2020

    Although Rye Meads is closed at the moment, we want to bring the site in to your homes.  I was fortunate to visit the reserve recently to carry out some essential work and I was struck by the smell of the hawthorn in blossom as I approached the visitor centre and bonus, a lesser white throat singing in the car park.  With an abundance of warbler song and butterflies to accompany me as I carried out some checks it was a…

    • 22 Apr 2020
  • Rye Meadlings Easter Activities

    Today would have been one of our regular Rye Meadlings sessions on the reserve. So we thought we would share some of the activities we might have been running for you to try with your little ones in your own home or garden.

    Here are some Easter themed activities for you and your children to try out over the next few days. Please bear in mind the latest Government restrictions and do not travel to access outdoor spaces…

    • 6 Apr 2020
  • Rye Meads is Closed.

    Following the latest government guidance we have closed Rye Meads reserve from 24 March 2020 until further notice.
    During these difficult and unsettling times, we hope that nature can provide a welcome respite either in your own garden or local open space.
    We will update this and our other social media sites when the situation changes.
    Thank you for your continued support.
    Keep well and stay safe…
    • 24 Mar 2020