Hainault Forest • Vision RCL

Hainault Forest

Hainault Forest Country Park, Romford Road, Chigwell,
Opening Times:


Car Park


Children’s Play Area

Fishing Lake

Nature Trail

Nature Reserve

Picnic Area

Public Toilets

Rowing Boats


Hainault Forest Lake view

Barbecues are not permitted at any of our parks and open spaces.

About the park

Hainault Forest is one of London’s hidden gems, a large park with woodlands and a variety of activities to take part in. While visiting the forest, why not walk through the Woodhenge behind the lake which features wood sculptures by local artists and follow the sculpture trail.

The completion of the playground is part of the final phase of the £7m Hainault Forest restoration project, which has seen the reconstruction of the Victorian barns, which now boast a range of new features and facilities, including:

  • A stunning events space for weddings, corporate events, and celebrations
  • A new outdoor adventure play area
  • A new interactive visitor hub
  • A brand-new café Workshops for local artists and businesses

bird at hainault forest

In May 2019, Vision Redbridge Culture & Leisure secured funding of £4.2m from The National Lottery Heritage Fund on behalf of the London Borough of Redbridge for the restoration of the forest to its former natural and wild state. The money will also be used to help threatened species thrive, including eleven species of bat. 

Park at a glance

1856 Café

Forest adventures and fresh air mean that a rest and refuel stop at our 1856 café is a must for any trip to Hainault!

Set against a backdrop of stunning forest views our relaxed and informal café space inside the renovated 1856 barn is a perfect spot to grab a bite and we’ve got you covered whatever the time of day and whatever you’re craving.

The café will be open everyday 9am-4pm.

Foxburrows Barn

Foxburrows Barn is a brand-new function suite set within the magnificent 400 acres of Hainault Forest; the scenic views of the surrounding woodland provide the perfect backdrop for your function or event. Our large open plan room has its own fully stocked bar and adjoining toilets, use of kitchen facilities and the extensive forest surroundings.

If you’d like to know more about our facilities, pricing, and availability or have more specific questions, get in touch with us today.

Lamas at Foxburrows Farm at Hainault Forest

Foxburrows Farm

Come and meet our furry friends!

We are open 7 days a week school holidays/bank holidays.
We are closed on Mondays during term time.

Summer Opening Hours
April to September
10am to 5pm

Winter Opening Hours
October to March
10am to 4pm

Outdoor Adventure Play Area

The newly built playground at Hainault Forest is now open for children to come and enjoy hours of fun.

The new play installations will tell the story of the site – from the beacon towers to the hermit’s hut – providing children with a range of sensory experiences and play spaces to play physically, imaginatively, and collaboratively. 

All play equipment is made from natural wood taking inspiration from the surrounding Forest and its royal history as a Tudor hunting ground. The outdoor play installations complement the storytelling experience that children can discover at the indoor exhibition in the neighbouring barns. The new playground is also home to the biggest slide in Redbridge.

Hainault Forest Play Area
Deputy Leader with Parks Team at Hainault Forest promoting Green Flag Award 2023/24

Green Flag Award Park

The national standard for parks and open spaces in England and Wales recognises and rewards the best green spaces in the country with Green Flag Status.

Hainault Forest has retained its Green Flag Status for 2023 and will gain automatic entry into the People’s Choice Awards 2023. Keep an eye for the announcement, to cast your vote for Hainault Forest in the People’s Choice Awards.

Car Parking

Car parking available at this site, payment via RingGo. No cash payments accepted.

Motorcycles can park for free if they are parked within a bay.

There is no allocated parking for coaches at Hainault Forest. If you wish to bring a coach party you will need to notify the park in advance by emailing Hainaultforest@visionrcl.org.uk

empty car park


Our Walking for Health Group meets regularly at Hainault Forest for more see our Walking for Health page.

For more information on regular activities taking place at Hainault Forest, visit the Hainault Forest website.

Watch our short video and discover all the Community Activities available at Hainault Forest

Support your local park

Your donation will help us continue to care for and maintain our parks and allow them to be enjoyed by you, your family and future generations.

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