Nottingham City Council's natural sites offer the opportunity to experience wildlife, nature conservation and biodiversity first hand.
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- Beeston Sidings
- Holme Pit Pond
- Clifton Grove Woods
- Colwick Woods Local Nature Reserve
- Harrison's Plantation
- Hucknall Road Linear Walkway
- Martins Pond Local Nature Reserve
- Moorbridge Pond/Springfield Corner
- Sandy Banks
- Sellers Wood
- Sunrise Hill
Beeston Sidings Local Nature Reserve is located 4 miles south of the city centre and plays a key role to Nottingham's environment. With its mixture of open water and grassland, Beeston Sidings accommodates a variety of habitats that encourages a diverse range of plants and animal communities.
Designated a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINC), Beeston Sidings has been recognised in having a high nature conservation value to the City. From unusual trees and shrubs, a variety of birds and fish and a number of fascinating mammals including foxes, field voles and the common shrew, visitors to Beeston Sidings have the opportunity to see a diverse range of both flora and fauna, some of which are nationally rare species.
The site covers 4 hectares and comprises of a former railway sidings and Pasture Lane Brook, a stream that flows into Dunkirk Pond and which was once a ballast pit.
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Holme Pit is a man-made deep pond surrounded by reed-swamp, wet grassland and willow carr vegetation. The site covers 3.5 hectares and was designated as an SSSI in 1982 because of its range of wetland and neutral marsh flora and fauna. The site also supports a diverse range of aquatic species and provides a habitat for a variety of breeding, passage and wintering birds.
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Clifton Woodlands, Clifton Grove and Holme Pit Pond are three diverse sites that make up part of the River Trent Wildlife Corridor. The sites are easily accessible to visitors for leisure, recreation or educational purposes and are of significant importance and value to both people and wildlife from across the region.
Clifton Woods cover 12.1 hectares and are situated at the rear of Clifton Hall, along the escarpment of the River Trent. These woods are part of a series of woodlands that run for several miles along the River Trent. They contain giant redwoods and notable plants such as crosswort, wood stitchwort and yellow archangel. The site is also an important feeding ground for a local pipistrelle bats.
Clifton Grove is on a steep escarpment alongside the River Trent running over a mile in length from Clifton Hall to the edge of the floodplain of Fairham Brook. Mixed deciduous woodland dating back from around 1690 can be admired here alongside the footpath within the site, which forms part of the Trent Valley Way.
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Colwick Woods is one of the cities hidden-gems. This 50-hectare site encompasses rich grassland and ancient woodland providing an oasis of tranquillity just one mile from the bustle of the City. Colwick Woods was designated as a geological Site of Special Scientific Interest in 1995 and listed as a Local Nature Reserve in 2004 continuing to be a place for visitors to enjoy whatever their interests.
Harrison's Plantation is fascinating woodland which links Martin's Pond with Raleigh Pond in Wollaton. Covering 4 hectares, this site plays a vital role in providing this part of the city with an important wildlife reservoir imperative to the environment in today's current climate.
The woodland is dominated by sycamore, ash, wild cherry and oak. Damper areas support mature crack willows and alders whilst the understorey is a sparse layer of elder, hawthorn with some regenerating cherry. The ground flora includes a number of characteristic plants including dog's mercury, red campion, nettle-leaved bellflower and bramble.
Raleigh Pond, which is thought to be a former claypit, sits towards the eastern end of the woods and supports breeding mallard as well as providing an excellent habitat for frogs and toads.
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Hucknall Road Linear Walkway extends approximately 2km from Moorbridge, Bulwell Forest, in the north of the city all the way adjacent to Hucknall Road (A611) to Arnold Road, Bestwood. It is a former section of the Great Northern Railway and an important linear wildlife corridor and commuting route for pedestrians and cyclists into the City.
Hucknall Road Linear Walkway supports a mosaic of habitat types including oak and mixed deciduous woodland, scrub, exposed sandstone and small areas of both acid and limestone grassland, as a result of discarded railway clinker and exposed sandstone. This range of habitats adds aesthetic and wildlife interest, ecological value and structural diversity to the site.
Martin's Pond is a Green Flag Award winning site that sits amongst the roads and buildings and the hustle bustle of the city, three miles west of Nottingham's City Centre. Covering nearly four hectares of diverse wetland and woodland, boasting eleven different habitats including standing water, swamp and fen, scrub, willow scrub, bracken, semi natural and plantation woodland, Martins' Pond Local Nature Reserve is a haven for wildlife and people alike.
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Located in the north of the city, these two sites sit astride the River Leen and together make up another of the city's Local Nature Reserves. With a wide diversity of habitats found within relatively small sites, they offer a haven for wildlife as well as for people. Springfield Corner hosts a mosaic of deciduous woodland, scrub and meadow habitats as well as access to the River Leen. Moorbridge Pond boasts marsh habitat and open water with woodland and scrub providing cover and foraging opportunities for the abundant birdlife and amphibians that the wetland site supports. Moorbridge pond is believed to be the site of the original "Bull Well", a fresh water spring that was capped and the flow re-routed to provide fresh water for industrial use by nearby dyeworks in the 1930s. Moorbridge pond supports a range of wetland pants including hairy willow herb, skullcap, lady's smock, hemp agrimony, figwort and yellow flag iris.
Sandy Banks is a Green Flag Award winning, haven for wildlife in the midst of one of Nottingham's largest council estates. Designated as a Local Nature Reserve in 2012, it comprises an area of lowland dry acid grassland, a nationally rare habitat, and one of the few remaining remnants within the City boundary.
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Sellers Wood Nature Reserve has significant appeal as both a recreational facility and somewhere with a great diversity of habitats, flora and fauna. Considering its location, the site is remarkably secluded and has many hidden corners. In 1981 English Nature designated the site as a Site of Specific Scientific Interest (SSSI) because of its fine example of broad-leaved semi natural woodland with its list of tree species including aspen, elder, wild cherry, rowan, ash and wych elm. The site also boasts many plants such as giant bellflower and early purple orchid. This nature reserve is not only special because of its trees; lots of hoverflies have been recorded there including the Triglyphus Primus which is nationally rare. Smooth newts, frogs and toads can also be found in the many ponds within Sellers Wood.
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Sunrise Hill Nature Reserve lies at the heart of the Bestwood Estate. Despite it being the smallest local nature reserve park in the City at only 1.6 hectares, Sunrise Hill is of ecological importance to the region. As a result of its acidic grassland communities some of the species are considered rare and because of this Sunrise Hill was designated as a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINC).
Sunrise Hill is a significant site for butterflies and moths, in the spring and summer months keep an eye out for orange tips, painted lady's and the cinnabar moth. Likewise this nature reserve is also a firm favourite for bird watching with over 25 different species including the goldfinch, kestrel and song thrush.
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