RSPB Sandwell Valley

RSPB Sandwell Valley

RSPB Sandwell Valley - Discover the wildlife on your doorstep'€¦

This enchanting urban green space, once used by the nearby colliery, is now a place where wildlife flourishes. RSPB Sandwell Valley is a fascinating mosaic of different habitats providing homes to a variety of wildlife. Wildflower meadows bloom with colour and buzz with insect life.

Escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life and bathe in the woodland's relaxing atmosphere. The scrub is ideal for nesting birds and fills with winter thrushes feasting on the winter berries. Our wildlife garden might spark some ideas for giving nature a home in your own garden, and the ponds are full of life to explore.                                                                                                      

Family Activities                                                                 

Whatever the time of year, there's always something going on for all age groups to enjoy. Reserve staff and volunteers are happy to share their wealth of knowledge and help you to 'connect to nature'.

Wild times for all!

RSPB Sandwell Valley is a fantastic place to get close to nature. It's perfect for families to have fun together outdoors. Start your adventure at the visitor centre to find out about the latest activities and events, plot your route and get an idea of what wildlife to look out for at this beautiful countryside oasis.

Discover and play

There's a lot of nature to explore at RSPB Sandwell Valley. Visitors with little ones can enjoy walks along our buggy-friendly paths, wildlife challenges, activities and natural play features like our mud kitchen. Wildlife watchers can enjoy exploring our range of habitats, spotting the wildlife that lives here.

Wonderful wildlife

RSPB Sandwell Valley is home to a variety of wildlife. Visit the Lakeside Lookout hide to spot wetland birds with the help of our friendly guides, hire a kit to go bug hunting or pond dipping (seasonal) or just stroll around taking in seasonal highlights such as dragonflies, fungi, wildflowers and more.

Relax and enjoy

Take in the wonderful view from our dog-friendly visitor centre while enjoying a hot drink and a snack. Our indoor family activities available are especially great for a rainy day.



Warblers arrive back home. Swallows and sand martins return in April, followed by house martins. Reed buntings and dunnocks start singing, adding their voices to the chorus. Lapwing chicks, goslings and ducklings are a delight to see. Early butterflies and bumblebees visit the spring flowers. The pond life wakes up ready to be explored.


Chiffchaffs sing their two note song from treetops, complementing nine species of warbler setting up homes. Swifts zoom past, hunting insects over the lake. Newts bask in the warm ponds while dragonflies dart around overhead. Beautiful flowers bloom in the meadow and the bee bank buzzes with solitary burrowing bees.


Wading birds stop off on their journeys for a rest. Water rails can be glimpsed when they break cover between the reeds. The leaves turn into vivid reds, oranges and yellows and bullfinches visit the feeding station near the visitor centre. Ring necked parakeets feed on the apple trees in the wildlife garden.


Winter ducks including wigeons, teals, pochards, shovelers and goosanders gather on Forge Mill Lake. Fieldfares and redwings feast on berries in the scrub. 100 snipe and jack snipe gather. The feeding station is a swirl of activity with willow tits, bullfinches and more.

Visitor Centre:

  • Room Hire available for meetings, parties, training and classes.
  • Hire a guide, guided sessions around the reserve tailored to wildlife interests.
  • Hire the Hide, private bookings for the hide out of opening hours.

Opening times:

The reserve and trails are open to pedestrians at all times.

Visitor centre and car park are open Wed - Sunday, 10am - 5pm summertime, 10am - 4pm wintertime.

The hide is open 10am - 3pm Wednesday - Sunday (subject to volunteer availability)

Entrance Charges:

Entrance to the reserve is free!

Car park cost

£3 per vehicle in the visitor centre car park - RSPB members park for free.

School Visits to Sandwell                                                                                                              

Are you a primary school teacher looking to give your class a new learning experience as well as ticking some of those important curriculum boxes?

Discover a knot of newts, a knab of toads or a cloud of grasshoppers. Spy an army of caterpillars, a charm of goldfinches or a loveliness of ladybirds! Help your class connect to nature and use their senses to learn to identify the range of wildlife on your doorstep..

We have a compact site that is suitable for young children to explore that has been designed to engage and give hands-on memorable learning experiences. The range of habitats here means that we can provide investigative field work and offer experience-led programmes to suit your group's needs: teaching ponds, mini-beast meadows, a hide on stilts, woodland walks, sensory garden and bridle paths.

Our carefully-designed programmes will help your pupils in all aspects of their learning and provide an excellent opportunity for their social and emotional development. Confidence levels soar and children enjoy the cooperative nature of our activities.

Each programme is designed to last two hours; sessions run from 10 am to 12 pm and then 12.30 to 2.30 pm.  Two programmes can be combined to make a whole day visit.

Pricing - £3.50 for a two-hour session, or £6.00 for two sessions to make a full day.
There is a minimum charge of £75 for a half day and £120 for a full day. 

Visit our website for more details                                                                  

Contact our teacher, Gretel Cooper to find out more, discuss your visit, and find out how we can help your class have a fantastic and memorable day:
Phone: 0121 357 7395

Nature's Reach
RSPB Sandwell Valley,
20 Tanhouse Avenue, Great Barr, Birmingham
B43 5AG


20 Tanhouse Avenue, Birmingham, West Midlands, B43 5AG
0121 357 7395 Send email Visit website