New Forest National Park - Forest life in photographs

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Welcome to my "Forest Life in Photographs"

My website logo ©I am fortunate and privileged to live within The New Forest National Park, so I'm able to travel around it daily and fully appreciate its beauty.

The New Forest became a National Park in March 2005, covering 145 square miles.  The New Forest's name is misleading, not being new at all, but dating back over 900 years to the time of William the Conquerer in 1079.  It gets its name from the latin nova foresta, which translates literally as ‘new hunting ground’, which William created for the pursuit of the ‘beasts of the chase’ – red, roe and fallow deer and wild pig.

The habitat is so diverse; consisting of woodland, heathland, grassy plains, wetland, bogs and estuaries, making it an area of outstanding natural beauty and thriving wildlife.

My website is not intended to be a 'tourist guide' as such.   There are several other websites covering the various tourist attractions available, such as eating establishments, accommodation, shopping, places to visit for family fun days out, etc.  My approach is to concentrate on all the elements of the Forest - trees, plants, streams, lakes, wildlife, etc., - and how they relate to one another to create the 'atmosphere and mood' of peace and tranquility that I find most appealing.  I have photographed my favourite locations, showing the views and natural settings of flora and fauna that give me the greatest pleasure and inspiration, throughout the various seasons.  Some of the photos are accompanied by brief explanatory text, and more detailed long walks have a walk-through explanation to help link all the photos together.   There is also an insight into parts of the Forest that tourists don't normally see; by leaving the main footpaths to venture along the lesser trodden grassy paths, going deep into the Forest to discover breathtaking beauty that otherwise may go unseen.  It is essentially Forest life in photographs.

The New Forest is full of ancient trees.  The amazing shapes that some of these trees create will feature here.   Also, the iconic New Forest Ponies will make several appearances.   Much loved by residents and tourists, they are an essential part of the continuing attraction and maintenance of the Forest and are allowed to roam freely.   They wander all around the Forest, criss-crossing over roads and through villages to get to their next food source - day and night. Therefore, extreme care is required when travelling around the Forest by vehicle at all times, but extra vigilence is needed during the hours of darkness.  Donkeys, cattle and pigs can also be seen roaming free.  The owners of all of these animals are exercising their commoning rights to allow them to graze freely.

Deer also can suddenly emerge from the Forest, running across the road to reach the other side, so you need to be mindful of that too.

Anyway, I am very passionate about The New Forest National Park, which I am very proud to call my home, and I never take for granted all the peace, tranquility and beauty it has to offer.

I hope that, through my photographs, you can share the love and appreciation I have for this environment which I experience every day.

Note 1: The National Grid References I have used throughout my website to locate specific features and places more easily are used in conjunction with the Ordnance Survey OS Explorer Map OL 22, an excellent walking guide for exploring the New Forest.

Note 2:   In the sections where I have featured War Memorials, you can get more information about them by visiting the Imperial War Museums website.

Note 3:   None of the walks I have done whilst on my photoshoots are 'official' ones.  I have designed them myself around the photographs I was wanting to take at the time in a particular area.
It's advisable to go to the Visitor Information Centre in Lyndhurst and buy official walking guides for an area you're interested in.  These guides will list the type of terrain you'll encounter, the suitability for buggies or wheelchairs, distance of the walk and average length of time it will take, etc.  You can also buy cycle maps there for routes to follow through the Forest.

Note 4:   Website updates.  I am regularly adding new photographs, so to make it easier to find them I have included an 'Updates' section further down this page.

Note 5:   I revisit many areas of the Forest often and at different times of the year, so I add these photoshoots to separate slideshows in the appropriate sections.  I distinguish each different set by placing the date with them (when I remember to do so of course.)
A typical New Forest National Park boundary marker.
Map showing the location and coverage of the National Park.
Popular Places

The three areas below are ideal picnic and play areas that also provide public conveniences (not many of them have toilet facilities). Additionally, Anderwood and Wilverley Plain have static barbecue areas that can be hired for large groups.
Check out the Forestry Commission website to read the barbecue code of conduct.

This beautiful shady car park, nestled in the trees, is a perfect spot to enjoy a picnic or barbecue. Take a relaxing stroll through the forest whilst listening to the wildlife all around you.

Bolderwood is situated on an old coaching route, and ticks all the boxes for a family day out. Bring a picnic, have a barbecue, then explore the waymarked trails, cycle or just relax in the sun. Visit the deer sanctuary, where a viewing platform is provided for the best vantage point.

Wilverley Inclosure

Enjoy a perfect family day out, where an extensive grassy lawn provides an ideal area for picnicing or playing games. A barbecue area is available next to the car park. There is easy access into the adjoining woodland and it's waymarked trails.


I've had feedback from many of my regular visitors to the website that they would like to see an updates section included, to make it easier to find newly added photographs.

I am constantly adding photographs, either to existing areas or some new sections, so finding the new ones easily can take a long time.  For first-time visitors this is not a problem as everything is new to them, but I appreciate the need to have a quick reference guide for my regulars.

The table below contains the section that has been updated, the name of the photoset and the date new photos have been added.
Click on the underlined link to go straight to the page.

I will also place a camera image at the start of the updated photoset as a visual guide...
... this is it, so keep an eye out for this too.

I will remove the 'New photos added' image soon afterwards.

Menu SectionPhotoset NameDate Added

September 2017 - more new updates to be added a.s.a.p. - particularly the newly discovered 'Octopus Stinkhorn' fungus.

*  The Members Area contains a selection of higher quality and much larger versions of the photographs that are displayed  in the 'public' areas.
     Authorisation is required to enter the Members Area, and membership is limited at this time.
Local Weather

This Brockenhurst weather forecast is generated
by the Met Office Weather Widget

Kathy and I go for lots of leisurely walks through the Forest, and I do a lot on my own with just my camera.
Sometimes though, we want a higher intensity workout so we do our Nordic Walking.

We went on one of Suzanne Madden's 4-week courses in October 2015 and passed with flying colours.  Based in Brockenhurst, Suzanne and her husband Trevor run the courses in and around the New Forest.

Kathy and I meet up with Suzanne whenever we can to do one of her walks.  If you wish to know more about this activity I've put a link to their website.  Just click on their logo above to go there.
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Copyright © 2018 | Laurie Pickering photography | All Rights Reserved.
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