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Halwill Junction

A variety of wildlife alongside a disused railway line

The life of Halwill Junction changed when Dr Beeching decided, with a stroke of his red pen, to close the branch lines of North Devon. The last trains ran to the station here in the late 1960s - from that point on the bustle of steam engines was replaced by the buzz of wildlife.


Halwill Junction became a Devon Wildlife Trust nature reserve in 1990. It's small, but its 2.5 hectares follow the course of old platforms and railway lines. Today a cycle/easy path makes this one of our more accessible reserves. The path also links the site into the nearby Cookworthy Forest.


Green woodpecker stands neck outstretched.

Spot green woodpeckers at Halwill Junction. Photo, Andy Morffew


Woodland edge

On your visit you'll see goat willow, ferns and broadleaved helleborines on the edges of the former railway line edges. Birds include the green woodpecker and in the spring/summer warblers.


Halwill Junction is also a good place to see butterflies including wood whites. Look along the edges of the cycle way for this slow flying species.

Species and habitats

Golden-ringed Dragonfly, Meadowsweet

Nearby nature reserves

Ash Moor
8 miles - Devon Wildlife Trust
Meeth Quarry
8 miles - Devon Wildlife Trust
Sourton Quarry
8 miles - Devon Wildlife Trust

Nature reserve map

Reserve information

Beeching Close Off Chilla Road Halwill Junction
between Okehampton and Holsworthy
EX21 5XY
Map reference
SS 443 003
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Opening Times
Open at all times
2.50 hectares
Cycle track suitable for wheelchairs.
Walking information
Cylcle trail leads to Cookworthy Forest. Wooded branch leads to a dead end. Allow 30 minutes to explore this site.
Free parking in the Parish Hall Car Park to the right of the Junction Inn pub
Dogs allowed
Grazing animals
Reserve manager
Devon Wildlife Trust
Tel: 01392 279244


Factsheets and guides for your visit