Welcome to Keele arboretum

Our well-wooded grounds with their lakes, streams and formal flower beds support a wealth of wildlife.

Keele University is situated in 240 hectares (640 acres) of landscaped grounds to the west of the Potteries conurbation in North Staffordshire, UK.

aerial view of campus

The well-wooded grounds with their lakes, stream and formal flower beds support a wealth of wildlife. The surrounding countryside of the Staffordshire / Shropshire / Cheshire borders is also a rich area for the naturalist and rambler while the majestic gritstone moorland of North Staffordshire and the limestone dales of Derbyshire and northeast Staffordshire are not far away.

Of the 240 hectares, some 120 hectares were originally leased out as Home Farm but are now the site of a major expansion of the campus. Of the remainder, about half is woodland while the rest comprises the campus buildings and sports fields. The landscape we see today owes much to the work of Ralph Sneyd (1793 to 1870) who began planting on a grand scale in 1830, after inheriting the estate from his father.

Throughout the period of its construction, the University has been careful to preserve as many mature trees as possible and to restrict the height of buildings to maintain the feeling of living and working in a landscape.

Trees are a major feature of the University's grounds and it was decided to try and set up an arboretum in order to make them available to a wider public. The trees, of course, attract a wide variety of other flora and fauna and this has been incorporated into the website.

The many footpaths that criss-cross the University estate enable much of this natural history to be observed at relatively close quarters. There is a guided walk leaflet and several booklets to help with your enjoyment of the campus.

We hope that you enjoy your visit to Keele - virtual or in person. If you have any comments, observations or suggestions then please send them in.