Rushy Common and Tar Lakes

A 30 hectare site with three lakes that are being managed for the benefit of people and wildlife.

Tar Lakes

Tar Lakes

Tar Lakes is an area of open space for local people to enjoy. The new eight hectare site offers an opportunity to walk around two lakes using footpaths accessible to people of all levels of mobility. The footpaths link to the wider network of public rights of way.

Amenity Lake

The amenity lake has been designed to be enjoyed by people. It has a 650 metres surfaced path suitable for wheelchair users, two main seating areas and perch posts every 100 metres.

Conservation Lake

The conservation lake has been designed for wildlife and provides a more informal, quiet area with mown paths meandering through longer grass.

Rushy Common Nature Reserve

Rushy Common Nature Reserve is a haven for wildlife and so public access is not permitted across the reserve.  However, the bird hide on the southern shore offers good views across the site and is accessible to wheelchair users. Keys for the hide can be purchased from the project office (contact details opposite) and enable you to visit this and other hides in the Lower Windrush Valley at any time.

Circular Walks from Rushy Common

Rushy Common car park provides a good starting point for circular walks in the wider area. Follow a three mile circuit south for a gentle walk beside the River Windrush or a three mile circuit north to South Leigh to see the wall paintings in the parish church of St James the Great.

Both Tar Lakes and Rushy Common are being managed by Smiths Bletchington, a gravel extraction company working in the Lower Windrush Valley. 

Visiting the sites

Rushy Common and Tar Lakes are found to the south east of Witney, on Cogges Lane, a single track road that runs from Cogges to Stanton Harcourt. The Ordnance Survey grid reference is SP 380 075.

By car

The car park at Rushy Common has space for roughly 20 cars and is open at all times. A height barrier restricts vehicles over 2.1 metres. There are two parking spaces designated for use by disabled visitors.

By bicycle

Access by road, down Cogges Lane or public bridleways enables off road cycling access from Ducklington or South Leigh. Cycle racks are available in the car park for those arriving by bicycle. Please note that cycling is not permitted on site.

By bus

There are no bus services along Cogges Lane. The nearest bus stop is 1 mile away at Hardwick. Hardwick can be reached by using the public rights of way across the valley. Visit Traveline South East or call 0871 200 22 33.

By foot

Public footpaths across the fields from Hardwick (1 mile), South Leigh (1 mile) and Ducklington (2 miles) all provide access to the site.

Please note that permissive access to Rushy Common Car Park, Tar Lakes and the associated footpaths is made available to the public at the discretion of the landowner and that access to the water is not permitted for any purpose.

For further information contact the Lower Windrush Valley Project.

Last reviewed
03 April 2012
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