It's part of the Northern Commons owned and managed by the National Trust, as opposed to the Crown lands managed by the Forestry Commission. The smaller areas have a slightly different grazing regime, providing closely-grazed turf interspersed with larger blocks of gorse.
But it's the approach to the main carpark that's pretty impressive to begin with - it's right besides a deep sand pit, which was used to extract gravel. This vastly-different geology to Salisbury (chalk), is very evident when walking in the area, especially following all this rain. The upper sand and gravels are quickly eroded into gulleys, exposing the clays beneath, making walking slightly hazardous! Nevertheless, the paths meander through heathland, grassland and clumps of silver birch and Scots pine, with great vistas. And following the rains, and in the glorious sunshine, the light reflecting off the puddles was beautiful.
Right, I'm really off this time!