Rainham Marshes R.S.P.B. Nature Reserve, Purfleet

4.5
#1 of 6 in Wildlife in Thurrock
Wildlife Area · Nature / Park
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Rainham Marshes is an RSPB nature reserve to the east of London, adjacent to the Thames Estuary in Purfleet, Thurrock and the London Borough of Havering. In 2000, the area of land was bought from the Ministry of Defence, who used it as a test firing range. With no activity for several years, the nature reserve was officially opened to the public in 2006. It has maintained much of its Medieval landscape, and is the largest area of wetland on the upper parts of the Thames Estuary.
The reserve is home to a diverse range of bird species, wetland plants and insects. It also has one of the most dense water vole populations in the country. In December 2005, the site was visited by a sociable lapwing; over 1,700 people visited the reserve to see this bird. Late in the bird's stay, four penduline tits were also found at the site. Entrance to the site is free to residents of Thurrock and the London Borough of Havering.
The site is home to an environmentally friendly visitor centre which features solar panels, rainwater harvesting, natural light and ventilation and a ground heat exchange system. This visitor centre, completed in 2006 at a cost £2 million, was designed by van Heyningen and Haward Architects The building won six awards for its BREEAM sustainable design, including a Green Apple Award, Regeneration and Renewal Award and a Royal Institute of British Architects National Award.
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Rainham Marshes R.S.P.B. Nature Reserve reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
219 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • Visited the site on a day when the rain bucketed down. We managed to get very wet but the lack of people made the experience outstanding. I am a member of the RSPB and support the protection of... 
    Visited the site on a day when the rain bucketed down. We managed to get very wet but the lack of people made the experience outstanding. I am a member of the RSPB and support the protection of...  more »
  • I visited Rainham Marshes for the first time this year. Mustn’t leave it so long next time. Heard my first chiffchaff of the year singing and saw a couple of great crested grebes displaying. What... 
    I visited Rainham Marshes for the first time this year. Mustn’t leave it so long next time. Heard my first chiffchaff of the year singing and saw a couple of great crested grebes displaying. What...  more »
Google
  • It's a great place for birdwatching. Recommended to families. There are loads of birds even in winter. Good food and cakes at their restaurant. 2 years later, I still come here but I’ve seen a change of the staff behaviour. Not sure if it’s because I’m Spanish and I go with my 2 children to drink tea and read bird books or because after 2 years of coming here we haven’t gained the trust of the people who works here. I see a difference on the way English people is treated here and ourselves. Is my objective opinion based in facts. I’ll keep coming as my children love this place
  • Definitely a place worth visiting if you're a birder or photographer. I was so lucky, saw my first glossy ibis on my first visit. Fantastic. Brilliant place. Lovely environment. So many friendly, helpful people.

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