NWT Hethel Old Thorn, photo by Roger Jones 1/3
Hethel Old Thorn, photo by Richard Osbourne 2/3
Hethel Old Thorn, photo by Richard Osbourne 3/3

Hethel Old Thorn

Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s smallest nature reserve happens to consist of just one very old ‘tree’, though perhaps bush would be a better description! At 0.025 hectares, it is the smallest Wildlife Trust nature reserve in the country.

Hethel Old Thorn is located beside a picturesque church. The tiny reserve is one of the smallest in the UK.

The Old Thorn

The eponymous thorn itself is thought to be one of the most ancient hawthorns in England, possibly dating from the Thirteenth Century. In 1755 its girth was recorded as 9 feet 1 inch, but it has now decayed to a remnant of its former self. Even so, there is still something very appealing about this venerable shrub, which continues to grow each year and remains healthy. Superstition has it that the hawthorn grew from the staff of Joseph of Arimathea – a folk tale associated with other thorns around the country including at Glastonbury.



Post code
NR14 8HE
Map reference
OS Landranger 134
Grid reference
TG 171 005
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Living Landscape
Opening times
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