What we manage
The Parks Services team manage over 30 of our less formal green spaces. These include several nature reserves, fishing ponds and most of the relict canal network. Also some disused railway lines (but not the Trans Pennine Trail - see 'Public Rights Of Way').
Most of the borough's other green spaces are not owned by us. Even those of high nature conservation value. We compile an annual report of the status of all the borough's 88 Local Sites. Known as 'Local Wildlife Sites' and 'Local Geological Sites' (or ‘RIGS’ – Regionally Important Geological or Geomorphological Sites). Read more about our Local Wildlife Sites.
The five declared Local Nature Reserves managed by Parks Services are:
- Carlton Marsh
- Dearne Valley Park (Hoyle Mill/ Monk Bretton)
- Elsecar Reservoir
- Potter Holes Plantation (Tankersley)
- West Haigh Wood (Grimethorpe).
We have management plans for all our five LNR's (Local Nature Reserves).
Countryside management projects
Countryside management projects are taking place at the nature reserves on an ongoing basis. Please contact us for more details.
The most recent large scale project was the 'Growth Point' one for Dearne Valley Park. Here £123,000 of grant funding was spent for environment improvements.
Sub projects within this include:
- improving wetland in a disused canal near Beevor Street
- opening up some river access for fishing and canoeing
- planting up new woodland blocks
- improving paths and signs
- habitat improvements to benefit otters and water voles
Ongoing projects carried out by our Countryside Rangers and arranged with Voluntary Action Barnsley. These include woodland management, scrub management, path maintenance and invasive species control.
Three of our nature reserve projects have been shortlisted for potential funding by the Heritage Lottery Fund. Subject to approval, work should begin in the summer 2014.
Other countryside management is being carried out at other sites by other departments. Worsbrough Mill and Country Park (which is also a Local Nature Reserve) and Cannon Hall Country Park.
We own large areas of woodland across Barnsley, which we manage for both nature and public use. Most of these areas are there for you to enjoy all year round. We do our very best to manage them so that things stay that way for years to come. You may also like to visit the South Yorkshire Forest, an area which many of our woodlands are part of.
A 'landscape character assessment' tells us what kind of land we have, and where.
If you'd like a copy of our assessment, please fill in our enquiry form. Please note that there may be a small charge for this to cover our costs.