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About the venue

  1. History

    The Lower Spen Local Nature Reserve covers approximately 3 hectares and was previously part of the old Ravensthorpe Sewerage Works. Early Ordnance Survey maps show that prior to the sewage works this was the site of a corn mill called Burgh Mill which dates earlier than 1855. Kirklees Culture and Leisure Services developed the site as a bird sanctuary in the mid 1980's. In 2000 Kirklees Metropolitan Council designated the site as a Local Nature Reserve and it is now managed for people and wildlife. In 2004 a partnership with the Wildspace! Ponds for People project saw the creation of three new pond scrapes to improve the wetland habitat for wildlife. Restoration work was also carried out on the circular path to allow better access for people and more seating was created for visitors.


    The main aim of the work done on the site is to create a range of habitats to attract a wide variety of wildlife. The original pond and marsh area supports a great number of insects as well as fish, frogs and newts. The meadows contain flowers that attract butterflies and bees. Woodland areas provide shelter and nest sites for birds. The water quality in the River Spen is improving, and it supports a wide range of wildlife on the shallow stony bed and well-vegetated river banks.


    The Wildspace! Ponds for People project and the restoration works at the Lower Spen Local Nature Reserve were funded by:
    English Nature, Big Lottery Fund, Biffaward, Awards For All, Kirklees Metropolitan Council's Environment Fund.


Lower Spen Local Nature Reserve,
Park Road,
WF13 3HB

Opening times:


Countryside Unit, Street Scene


Further information

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