About Farmoor Reservoir

Farmoor Reservoir is a reservoir at Farmoor, Oxfordshire, England, about 5 miles (8 km) outside the city of Oxford. It is close to the left bank of the River Thames. Like most of the reservoirs in the Thames Valley, it was not formed by damming a valley. In this case the banks were raised above the local ground level using material excavated from within the bowl of the reservoir.

The reservoir is split into Stage 1 (completed 1967, 4,544 million litres) and Stage 2 (completed 1976, 9,298 million litres). Among other locations, Farmoor supplies the large town of Swindon, some 25 miles (40 km) to the southwest.

Countryside walk

There is a four-mile walk around the reservoir offers views of the water, woodland paths, Thames riverside meadows and nature reserves.

The walk starts from the visitor car park at gate three, and maps can be obtained from the Farmoor Reservoir centre.

Information boards around the walk explain the wildlife interest of the area.

Dogs are welcome, if kept on a lead, but nowhere else on the reservoir site.

We regret that the walk is not suitable for wheelchairs.

Accessible wetland trail

There is a recently built a trail suitable for wheelchairs, which links our accessible bird hide at Pinkhill Meadow with the hide at nearby Shrike Meadow.

There is a short ramp with a 1:20 slope, and car parking for disabled badge holders is available at the Pinkhill hide at the start of the trail.

Please report to the Farmoor Reservoir centre on arrival.

Bird watching at Farmoor

Farmoor Reservoir is one of the top birdwatching venues in Oxfordshire.

The combination of open reservoir, woodland, and riverside wetlands and meadows attracts a great variety of birds ranging on occasion from Ospreys Pandion haliaetus to Garganey Anas querquedule to the sought after Red Throated Diver that visits the site through the winter months.

Farmoor has a close relationship with the Oxford ornithological society and hold open days and bird events through the year.

The three wetland nature reserves situated at the northern end of the site have won national awards for habitat creation and management. They offer superb views and hands on experience with of some of the sites wonderful array of inhabitants.


Oxford sailing club runs dinghy and windsurfing racing and training events on a regular basis.

The Oxford and district school sailing association provides sailing experience and training for young people and schools in the area.

Address & Facilities


Farmoor Reservoir,
Cumnor Road,

Email: hanna.jenkins@thameswater.co.uk