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Lower Moor Farm Nature Reserve

On Monday May 14th HRH The Prince of Wales, Patron of the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust, and The Duchess of Cornwall will open the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust’s new Lower Moor Farm nature reserve, near Oaksey, north Wiltshire.

Lower Moor Farm is the Trust’s ground-breaking new initiative that will take nature conservation onto a bolder scale than ever before in Wiltshire in recognition that wildlife needs larger areas of good habitat if it is to survive the pressures of climate change.

The 96-acre site was bought in 2005 and now forms the gateway to four neighbouring Trust reserves – Swillbrook Lakes, Clattinger Farm, Oaksey Moor Farm Meadow, and Sandpool, for which it is currently fundraising.

Together they form an important mosaic of wildlife habitats - lakes, ponds, streams, ancient hedges and meadows – which play a strategic part in the Trust’s vision of creating a whole wildlife-rich landscape in the upper Thames catchment.

Lower Moor Farm is a unique site, both for its wildlife and because it addresses broader environmental issues within a visitor centre that sets a gold standard for sustainable construction and which showcases lots of ideas to inspire visitors to lead a greener lifestyle.

The biggest of its three lakes, Mallard Lake, is one of only two lakes in Wiltshire to be designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and contains rare stoneworts - aquatic plants that will only live in exceptionally clear and clean waters.

Highlights
The waters are awash with water fowl, and otters, water voles, dragonflies, rare butterflies, and nightingales all make the reserve their home.

New state of the art eco Visitor Centre
The visitor centre, bird hides, paths and even an otter holt were built using sustainably-sourced timber or recycled waste materials.

The centre has solar panels and sun pipes for heating and lighting, with additional heating provided by a carbon-neutral biomass stove.

It provides habitat for wildlife within its walls with bat roosts behind the natural larch panelling, and a wildflower meadow on the roof sown with seed from Clattinger Farm.

Location
Coming off the M4 at junction 17. Follow the A429 to Cirencester, turning off right for the village of Oaksey. Pass through Oaksey in the direction of Somerford Keynes. As you leave Oaksey village you will cross over the railway line and then an S bend. Immediately after the S bend the entrance to Lower Moor Farm is on your right hand side.

From Cricklade on the A419. Turn left onto the B4696 towards Somerford Keynes. Continue along the road (past the crossroads that lead to Clattinger Farm) and the Lower Moor Farm entrance will be on your left handside.

Entrance to Lower Moor Farm is approximately 50 yards from the public footpath running alongside Lower Moor Farm. Please do not enter the site down the footpath.

Once on site please park on the right hand side adjacent to the Dutch Barn. Please do not continue down the driveway and park in the Lower Moor Farm farmhouse (previous fishery car park) as this is privately owned.

Grid reference: SU008938

Fundraising
Lower Moor Farm was the subject of the Trust’s most successful fundraising effort ever. It received £1.2 million in grant aid from the Heritage Lottery Fund, (£681,500), Aggregates Levy, plus donations from the Hills Group and Grantscape, for purchase and development of the site. Members and supporters donated over £113,000 to its fundraising appeal.

These maps are intended as a guideline only; you must check the exact location of the reserve yourself. Wildlife Extra assumes no responsibility for the accuracy or usefulness of the information on this website.

 
 

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