Two Tree Island is typical of many Essex coastal sites. It was reclaimed from the sea in the 18th century when a sea-wall was built around saltmarsh and used for rough grazing by cattle. In 1910 a sewage farm was built on its eastern tip. In 1936 Southend Borough Council acquired the whole island and used it as a rubbish tip until the 1970s.

The eastern part, with the adjoining saltmarsh (71 ha) and a large area of inter-tidal mudflats (193 ha) is a nature reserve managed by Essex Wildlife Trust. It is part of Leigh National Nature Reserve.

Photo 1 shows the entrance sign which includes a site map and some basic information about the reserve.

Photo 1, © Martin Sutherland

Photo 2 shows a path on the interior of the reserve.

Photo 2, © Martin Sutherland

Photos 3-5 show views over estuarine habitats within, and adjacent to, the reserve.

Photo 3, © Martin Sutherland

Photo 4, © Martin Sutherland

Photo 5, © Martin Sutherland