List of Local Nature Reserves in Leicestershire

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Snibston Grange
Snibston Grange was formerly the garden of the local colliery manager.

Leicestershire is a county in the East Midlands of England. The area of the administrative county is 806 square miles (2,090 km2)[1] and the population according to the 2011 census is 980,000.[2] Leicester City Council is a unitary authority,[3] and the rest of the county is administered by Leicestershire County Council at the top level, with seven district councils in the second tier, Blaby, Charnwood, Harborough, Hinckley and Bosworth, Melton, North West Leicestershire and Oadby and Wigston.[4]

Local Nature Reserves (LNRs) are designated by local authorities under the National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949. The local authority must have a legal control over the site, by owning or leasing it or having an agreement with the owner. LNRs are sites which have a special local interest either biologically or geologically, and local authorities have a duty to care for them. They can apply local bye-laws to manage and protect LNRs.[5][6]

As of December 2017, there are 23 Local Nature Reserves in the county.[7] The largest is Burbage Common and Woods at 85 hectares (210 acres), where over 300 species of flowering plants, 250 of fungi, 100 of birds, 20 of butterflies and 15 of damselflies and dragonflies have been recorded.[8] The smallest is Lucas Marsh with 1.5 hectares (3.7 acres), a former quarry which is part of Brock's Hill Country Park.[9] All sites are open to the public, apart from Knighton Spinney, which is only accessible on occasional open days.[10]

Key[edit]

Map all coordinates using: OpenStreetMap · Google Maps
Download coordinates as: KML · GPX

Other classifications[edit]

Sites[edit]

SitePhotographArea[a]Location[b]BoroughOther classificationsMap[c]Details[d]Description
Aylestone MeadowsAylestone Meadows8.8 hectares
(22 acres)
Leicester
52°36′29″N 1°09′29″W / 52.608°N 1.158°W / 52.608; -1.158 (Aylestone Meadows)
SK 571 015
BlabyMapDetailsThis is the largest area of open space in Leicester. It has species-rich meadows which are grazed by longhorn cattle, and wild fauna include otters and kingfishers.[11]
Billa Barra HillBilla Barra Hill20.7 hectares
(51 acres)
Stanton under Bardon
52°41′53″N 1°18′43″W / 52.698°N 1.312°W / 52.698; -1.312 (Billa Barra Hill)
SK 466 114
Hinckley and BosworthMapDetailsThe top of the hill is a former quarry, leaving exposed rocks which provide a habitat for a variety of mosses and lichens. Lower down there are areas of acid grassland, and locally sourced trees have been planted on the lower slopes.[12]
Birstall MeadowsBirstall Meadows15.6 hectares
(39 acres)
Birstall
52°40′59″N 1°06′18″W / 52.683°N 1.105°W / 52.683; -1.105 (Birstall)
SK 606 099
LeicesterMapDetailsThese meadows on the bank of the River Soar are flower-rich damp grassland. They are grazed by horses and cattle, and there are large areas of open water which provide a winter feeding ground for waterfowl.[13]
Bishop's MeadowBishop's Meadow21.8 hectares
(54 acres)
Loughborough
52°47′31″N 1°13′01″W / 52.792°N 1.217°W / 52.792; -1.217 (Bishop's Meadow)
SK 529 219
CharnwoodMapDetailsThis area of grassland, swamp and fen has mature beech trees, a diverse flora, fungi and bryophytes. The Grand Union Canal runs along its southern boundary.[14]
Burbage Common and WoodsBurbage Common85.0 hectares
(210 acres)
Hinckley
52°32′56″N 1°20′20″W / 52.549°N 1.339°W / 52.549; -1.339 (Burbage Common and Woods)
SP 449 948
Hinckley and BosworthSSSI[15]MapDetailsThese semi-natural woods on poorly drained soils are dominated by ash and oak. Hazel and hawthorn are common in the shrub layer, and there are flowers such as sweet woodruff and water avens.[16] The common is unimproved grassland with some areas of heath.[8]
Glen ParvaGlen Parva11.9 hectares
(29 acres)
Blaby
52°35′17″N 1°10′23″W / 52.588°N 1.173°W / 52.588; -1.173 (Glen Parva)
SP 561 992
BlabyMapDetailsThe Grand Union Canal runs along the western side of this site, which also has a pond, wet and neutral grassland, woodland, scrub and hedges.[17]
Goss MeadowsGoss Meadows2.8 hectares
(6.9 acres)
Leicester
52°39′18″N 1°09′54″W / 52.655°N 1.165°W / 52.655; -1.165 (Goss Meadows)
SK 566 067
LeicesterMapDetailsThis is a long narrow strip along the western side of Anstey Lane. It is woodland and grassland, which has some uncommon wild flowers, such as spiny restharrow.[18]
Halstead Road Centenary PastureHalstead Road Centenary Pasture3.2 hectares
(7.9 acres)
Mountsorrel
52°43′19″N 1°09′11″W / 52.722°N 1.153°W / 52.722; -1.153 (Halstead Road Centenary Pasture)
SK 573 141
CharnwoodMapDetailsThis unimproved flower meadow has surviving medieval ridge and furrow. An outcrop of granite is covered with lichens and mosses, and there is a hawthorn and sloe hedge. Birds include yellowhammers and linnets.[19]
Humberstone Park LNRHumberstone Park2.4 hectares
(5.9 acres)
Leicester
52°38′17″N 1°05′17″W / 52.638°N 1.088°W / 52.638; -1.088 (Humberstone Park)
SK 618 049
LeicesterMapDetailsThe nature reserve is part of Humberstone Park. It has diverse fauna and flora, and there is a sunken garden and a former railway embankment called Rally Bank.[20][21]
Kirby FrithKirby Frith2.1 hectares
(5.2 acres)
Leicester
52°38′10″N 1°12′14″W / 52.636°N 1.204°W / 52.636; -1.204 (Kirby Frith)
SK 540 045
LeicesterMapDetailsThis site is described by Natural England as the richest wildflower grassland in the county, with species such as devil's-bit scabious, betony and yellow rattle. Butterflies include speckled woods and meadow browns.[22]
Knighton SpinneyKnighton Spinney2.9 hectares
(7.2 acres)
Leicester
52°36′07″N 1°06′29″W / 52.602°N 1.108°W / 52.602; -1.108 (Knighton Spinney)
SK 605 008
LeicesterMapDetailsThis oak and ash plantation is part of Knighton Park. Flora include wood anemones, and there are birds such as nuthatches, treecreepers and great spotted woodpeckers.[23]
Lucas MarshLucas Marsh1.5 hectares
(3.7 acres)
Oadby
52°35′31″N 1°05′06″W / 52.592°N 1.085°W / 52.592; -1.085 (Lucas Marsh)
SP 621 997
Oadby and WigstonLRWT[24]MapDetailsThe marsh is dominated by greater willowherb and common reed, while there are also areas of rough grassland, a hedge, trees and scrub. Butterflies include small tortoiseshell, speckled wood, peacock and orange tip.[24]
Moira JunctionMoira Junction3.5 hectares
(8.6 acres)
Moira
52°44′20″N 1°09′00″W / 52.739°N 1.150°W / 52.739; -1.150 (Moira Junction)
SK 305 158
North West LeicestershireMapDetailsThis is part of the former Overseal railway sidings, which closed in 1966 and was developed as a nature area in 1991. It has two lakes, birch woodland and heath grassland.[25][26]
Morley QuarryMorley Quarry3.1 hectares
(7.7 acres)
Shepshed
52°45′25″N 1°17′46″W / 52.757°N 1.296°W / 52.757; -1.296 (Morley Quarry)
SK 476 179
CharnwoodMapDetailsThe quarries are a Regionally Important Geological Site, with rocks dating to 600 million years ago. The habitat is grassland and heath, with heather and gorse. There is a pond which has breeding toads.[27]
Nature AliveNature Alive5.7 hectares
(14 acres)
Coalville
52°43′55″N 1°22′30″W / 52.732°N 1.375°W / 52.732; -1.375 (Nature Alive)
SK 423 151
North West LeicestershireMapDetailsThis site was formerly a coal stocking yard for Snibston Colliery, and it now has diverse habitats such as woodland, ponds, a wildflower meadow, rough pasture and hedges. Fauna include water voles and great crested newts.[28][29]
New LountNew Lount21.3 hectares
(53 acres)
Newbold Coleorton
52°45′32″N 1°24′58″W / 52.759°N 1.416°W / 52.759; -1.416 (New Lount)
SK 395 181
North West LeicestershireMapDetailsThis site has a diverse bird population, such as green woodpeckers, chiffchaffs, blackcaps, willow warblers and goldcrests. Common and soprano pipistrelle bats catch insects over the site's four ponds.[30]
North KilworthNorth Kilworth2.0 hectares
(4.9 acres)
North Kilworth
52°26′35″N 1°05′38″W / 52.443°N 1.094°W / 52.443; -1.094 (North Kilworth)
SP 617 832
HarboroughMapDetailsThis site, which is part of North Kilworth Millennium Green, has a wildflower meadow, a moat with boardwalks and a paddock.[31]
Orchards, TheThe OrchardsThe Orchards6.6 hectares
(16 acres)
Leicester
52°39′04″N 1°09′54″W / 52.651°N 1.165°W / 52.651; -1.165 (The Orchards)
SK 566 063
LeicesterMapDetailsThis was formerly allotments. It has diverse habitats of damp and dry grassland, mature trees, scrub, and a pond which has many newts, frogs and toads.[32]
Reedbed Local Nature ReserveReedbed14.3 hectares
(35 acres)
Leicester
52°41′38″N 1°06′29″W / 52.694°N 1.108°W / 52.694; -1.108 (Reedbed Local Nature Reserve)
SK 604 111
LeicesterMapDetailsThis site, which is in the floodplain of the River Soar, is part of Watermead Country Park. It has lakes, reedbeds, woods, marshes and grassland. Breeding birds include reed warblers, sand martins and song thrushes.[33]
Saltersford WoodSaltersford Wood5.7 hectares
(14 acres)
Oakthorpe
52°43′05″N 1°31′30″W / 52.718°N 1.525°W / 52.718; -1.525 (Saltersford Wood)
SK 322 135
North West LeicestershireMapDetailsThis site has native woodland, hay meadows and areas of open water. These are called "flashes", and are the result of the flooding of Saltersford Brook caused by mining subsidence.[34][35]
ScraptoftScraptoft14.3 hectares
(35 acres)
Scraptoft
52°38′56″N 1°02′38″W / 52.649°N 1.044°W / 52.649; -1.044 (Scraptoft)
SK 648 061
LeicesterMapDetailsThis former Second World War prisoner of war camp has habitats including a pond, semi-improved grassland and mature hawthorn scrub. Scraptoft Brook runs along the southern boundary.[36]
Snibston GrangeSnibston Grange3.2 hectares
(7.9 acres)
Coalville
52°43′08″N 1°23′10″W / 52.719°N 1.386°W / 52.719; -1.386 (Snibston Grange)
SK 416 137
North West LeicestershireMapDetailsThis was formerly the garden of the local colliery manager, and is now part of Snibston Country Park. It has two fishing lakes, a Victorian arboretum with a wide variety of mature trees, a wetland area and a wildflower meadow.[37]
Watermead Country Park SouthWatermead Country Park South49.0 hectares
(121 acres)
Leicester
52°39′58″N 1°07′01″W / 52.666°N 1.117°W / 52.666; -1.117 (Watermead Country Park South)
SK 598 080
LeicesterMapDetailsThe River Soar runs through this site, which also has a lake. Natural England describes it as "one of the most important wildlife sites in the city".[38]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ The area is taken from the Natural England map of each site. (Click on the identify icon (i) in the "Feature Tools" and then click on the site.)
  2. ^ Unless otherwise stated, the location is taken from the Natural England details page for the site.
  3. ^ The maps are on the Natural England database of Local Nature Reserves.
  4. ^ Details are on the pages on each site in the Natural England database of Local Nature Reserves.[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Leicestershire". Encyclopedia Britannica. Archived from the original on 24 October 2017. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  2. ^ "Our Population". Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership. Archived from the original on 18 December 2017. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  3. ^ "About us". Leicester City Council. Archived from the original on 2 June 2016. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  4. ^ "Find your local council". Leicestershire County Council. Archived from the original on 2016-04-24. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  5. ^ "Protected or Designated Areas". Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs and Natural England. 9 April 2013. Archived from the original on 4 May 2015. Retrieved 29 July 2015. 
  6. ^ "Local Nature Reserves: Setting up and Management". Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs and Natural England. 2 October 2014. Archived from the original on 4 July 2015. Retrieved 29 July 2015. 
  7. ^ a b "Local Nature Reserves: Search results for Leicestershire". Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  8. ^ a b "Burbage Common and Woods". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  9. ^ "Lucas Marsh". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Archived from the original on 18 December 2017. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  10. ^ Notice at the Knighton Spinney site entrance
  11. ^ "Aylestone Meadows". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  12. ^ "Billa Barra Hill". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  13. ^ "Birstall". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  14. ^ "Bishop's Meadow". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  15. ^ "Designated Sites View: Burbage Wood and Aston Firs". Sites of Special Scientific Interest. Natural England. Archived from the original on 10 August 2017. Retrieved 10 August 2017. 
  16. ^ "Burbage Wood and Aston Firs citation" (PDF). Sites of Special Scientific Interest. Natural England. Archived (PDF) from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 22 September 2017. 
  17. ^ "Glen Parva (Glen Hills)". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  18. ^ "Goss Meadows". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  19. ^ "Halstead Road Centenary Pasture". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  20. ^ "Humberstone Park". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  21. ^ "Humberstone Park". Parks and Gardens UK. Archived from the original on 18 December 2017. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  22. ^ "Kirby Frith". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  23. ^ "Knighton Spinney". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 17 December 2017. 
  24. ^ a b "Lucas' Marsh". Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust. Archived from the original on 11 August 2017. Retrieved 10 August 2017. 
  25. ^ "Moira Junction". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  26. ^ "Proposal for the Formal Designation of Moira Junction and Saltersford Wood Nature Reserves as Local Nature Reserves" (PDF). Leicestershire County Council. 29 June 2004. Retrieved 3 December 2017. 
  27. ^ "Morley Quarry LNR" (PDF). The National Forest. Archived (PDF) from the original on 5 March 2016. Retrieved 25 November 2017. 
  28. ^ "Nature Alive". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  29. ^ "Coalville's Green Spaces" (PDF). North West Leicestershire District Council. Archived (PDF) from the original on 23 April 2016. Retrieved 19 November 2017. 
  30. ^ "New Lount". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  31. ^ "North Kilworth". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  32. ^ "The Orchards". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  33. ^ "Reedbed – Watermead Country Park (North)". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  34. ^ "Saltersford Wood". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  35. ^ "Saltersford Valley". The National Forest. Retrieved 3 December 2017. 
  36. ^ "Scraptoft". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  37. ^ "Snibston Grange". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 
  38. ^ "Watermead Country Park – south". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 18 December 2017. 

Coordinates: 52°43′N 1°11′W / 52.717°N 1.183°W / 52.717; -1.183