When visiting Bradgate Park and Swithland Wood, it is important that certain rules are followed to ensure they remain safe and clean for everyone to enjoy and protect the heritage in our care.  

We try to make sure everyone can enjoy these spaces safely. We assess and check all features of the Park on a regular basis, but our visitors also can help protect the heritage of the Estate and keep each other safe.

Please follow guidance on permitted areas for cycling (including speed awareness around other visitors), horse riding, and visiting with dogs (see Visitor Guidance).

Please note we do not allow swimming in any of the Pits or Watercourses on the Estate.  Swimming in cold, deep water can KILL. 

Safety around the Deer

Bradgate Park is famous for the Red and Fallow Deer, which roam freely. Please treat them with respect when visiting.  They can be dangerous as they are wild and therefore unpredictable.  Be aware of your surroundings, especially during the rutting season (September - October) and the birthing (May - July). The deer are protected by our Bye-laws as well as wildlife legislation.

Staying Safe Around Deer

Care around the deer.

Visitors need to treat these wild animals with respect. Please do not approach animals to try and stroke them. 
Do not feed the deer at Bradgate Park. 
All visitors, including visiting photographers (we always advise use a long lens) and those with mobile phones are asked to help safeguard the future of the deer by following a few basic rules:
Distance – do not get closer than 30 metres to the deer. 

Disturbance - if the deer are lying down it is a good indication they are ruminating, which is part of the deer’s digestion process. Try not to make the deer move as this upsets their digestion.
Pursuit - if the deer start to move away it is because they feel threatened. Please do not follow them as this causes stress similar to being chased. Whilst we have publicised dog chasing deer, visitors have also started to pursue animals and this is not acceptable. 
Surrounding- please do not try to photograph from all side this hems the deer in leaving them no room for manoeuvre and resulting in a high level of stress, comparable with being chased by a dog.

Deer can feel threatened by dogs, even over long distances and when the dog is not behaving in a provocative manner. This is particularly applicable during the rutting and birthing seasons. If you choose, at your own risk, to walk your dog in the Park at these times, please keep your distance from the deer and even in the Upper Park we advise you consider keeping your dog on a lead.

If a deer does charge, dog walkers are advised to let go of the lead so the dog can run away from danger. In this circumstance the deer is very unlikely to give chase; they simply want the dog to be a safe distance from their young.

Safety Advice for Dog Walkers

Owners of dogs, who chase wildlife, including deer, could face criminal prosecution and a compensation claim under the restorative justice programme.

Download the Public Space Protection Order for Bradgate Park and Swithland Wood Dog Control 2016 by clicking here

Commercial photographers, and those offering photography workshops and walks must apply for permission in advance. Please see the 'Commercial Use of the Estate section of this website (under 'About Us') for more details.



We have installed three defibrillators, also known as Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs) on Bradgate Park. These have been funded through generous support of our Fundraising Appeal from the public and local charitable trusts, including the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust. They are accessible 24/7.
We have a further portable unit that we can transport in emergencies to remote areas when rangers are on site.

As part of our Heart Safe Park Project we will continue to fundraise for further units, as Trust staff regularly assist with emergencies across the Estate.

Joe Humphries Trust Logo

We would like to thank the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust

Plus a thank you to everyone who donated to the appeal. 

Where are they located?

Defibrillator Map 2019 Location of Defibrillators

How do they work?

It is important to call the emergency services as soon as possible. When you call 999 (or 112) the emergency services will give you a code to open the defibrillator box and will remain on the line to help you. Defibrillators are easy to use and can cause no harm. Once activated, the machine will guide you through each step of the defibrillation process by using voice and visual prompts. A defibrillator can be used safely and effectively without previous training. The unit will analyse the heart’s rhythm and will only deliver a shock if it is indicated.

What to do in an emergency

If you see someone collapse and they are unconscious it may be that their heart has stopped: in this case swift reactions are required. It is important to call 999 (or 112) for an emergency ambulance as soon as possible. Every second counts and the following may help:

D – Danger - Check that both yourself and the collapsed person are not in danger

R – Response - Gently shake the person to try and wake them up

S – Shout - Shout loudly for help, especially if you may wish to get medical help or equipment

A – Airway - Open their airway by tilting their head back, lifting their chin and opening their mouth

B – Breathing - Look, listen and feel for breathing. If they are breathing normally, place the casualty in the recovery position.

If barely breathing or taking infrequent, noisy gasps, this is NOT normal breathing.

If not already done, call 999 or 112 for an Ambulance.

C –Turn - the casualty on their back and start heart massage (CPR) 2 compressions per second.
Giving emergency breaths to the collapsed person every 30 compressions is recommended, but is not compulsory

As soon as the Defibrillator arrives, switch it on and follow the instructions.

To report any incidents on the Estate contact: the Duty Ranger (7.45am to dusk) on 07740 406661 or Out of Hours on 07740 406662 or 07740 406663

Joe Humphries Memorial Trust Logo


Ticks are small creatures, related to spiders and mites, that feed on the blood of animals and sometimes people. They can survive in many places but prefer slightly moist, shady areas such as bracken, bushes and leaf litter, as well as long and short grass. Ticks can't jump or fly, so they have to wait until an animal(or human) brushes past to attach to their skin and feed by biting through the skin and sucking blood. The tick population peaks between late spring and autumn (April to October).

A small proportion of ticks may carry a bacterial infection known as Lyme disease, which in rare cases can be contracted by people. 

Information on the prevention and treatment of tick bites is published by Public Health England.


Snakes on the Park

Adders are the only venomous snake that is native to the British Isles. They are very rare and not aggressive but may bite if startled or touched. Adders may be found anywhere but usually bask on banks, stone walls and open ground. If you see one, leave it alone -and admire this reptile from a safe distance, as they are not often seen. 

If a person or pet is bitten, immediate medical or veterinary attention should be sought.