Got a Lancaster or Morecambe story? Contact us.
Bid to protect Lancashire's moorland
4:23pm Wednesday 19th September 2012 in News
MOORLAND across Lancashire could be given special protection under proposals being considered by conservation watchdog Natural England.
Plans are being drawn up to make the West Pennine Moors, home to some of the North West’s most stunning scenery, a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).
The protected status could eventually cover a 90-square mile area, from the edge of Blackburn, Darwen, Oswaldtwistle, and Haslingden, across to Chorley, and down to Rams- botton, Stubbins and Belmont.
If it covered the entire moors, it would take in the likes of Darwen Moor, Winter Hill, Rivington Pike, Angelzarke, and surr- ounding reservoirs, Has-lingden’s moorland, and encompass whole villages such as Tockholes, Hoddlesden, Belthorn, Edgworth, Turton and Belm- ont, Brinscall and Withnell.
Alice Kimpton, a lead adviser for Natural England in the North West, said, in a presentation to county councillors, that the organisation had been asked to look at a SSSI designation by the West Pennine Moors Management Committee, and Lanc- ashire MPs.
She added: “The West Pennine Moors is an area rich in wildlife and imp-ortant habitats, and has an excellent carbon storage capacity.”
Currently a survey is being undertaken to det-ermine the exact boundaries which should be incorporated under the SSSI programme.
This, along with similar work on the range of species across the moors, will then be presented to Natural England next February.
Further assessment will then need to be undertaken on the research findings and, if all the crit- ieria are met, the Site of Special Scientific Interest designation could be made around Christmas 2013.