Black Brook Nature Reserve, Staffordshire
Nearest town or settlement: Leek
Contact detailsOrganisation: Staffordshire Wildlife Trust
Tel: 01889 880100
Website: Black Brook nature reserve page on Staffordshire Wildlife Trust website
Black Brook is one of the Trust's largest conservation and landscape restoration projects. The objectives are to restore a diverse and wildlife rich range of habitats in keeping with the local landscape on 56 hectares of former conifer plantation situated on the upland fringe of the Peak District. This has included planting 8 hectares of broadleaf woodland with limited tree cover to allow natural regeneration, and restoration of open-ground habitats through natural recovery of the vegetation. The large-scale felling originally proposed proved contentious locally and an Environmental Impact Assessment had to be produced (2011). The restoration plans have been updated to take into account the outcome of this process. Full details of the EIA are available on the website.
For the new woodland, around 8,000 trees were grown from seed collected by Trust staff from Ancient Seminatural Woodland sites, Trust nature reserves or mature hedgerow trees in North Staffordshire, and planted by volunteers and staff. Additional trees were grown in a local nursery from Shropshire stock.