Hidden away in a shallow valley in the heart of Oswaldtwistle, Foxhill Bank Nature Reserve is historically linked to local industry as well as providing an excellent urban site for wildlife. The value of this reserve is its mixture of habitats in such a small area. The lodges were originally constructed for storing water for the dyeing and printing of fabrics at the works owned by the Brewer family next to Tinker Brook.
Having fallen into disuse and ruin, some major work was needed to convert the lodges from concrete-sided reservoirs into their present-day form. Vegetation has since colonised the lodges producing a mosaic of open water, Reedmace, Soft, Hard and Jointed Rush and newly planted Common Reed. This, along with the undisturbed scrub and bramble, provides seclusion for Coots, Moorhens, Mallard and many warblers. The banks of the brook provide an ideal habitat for mosses, lichens and liverworts where they thrive on the shaded, moist conditions. Broad Buckler and Male Ferns can be seen emerging from the cracks in the stone.
The woodland (a small area of Sycamore and Ash between the Brook and Foxhill Bank Lodge), dense scrub and wetland communities provide good cover, food and breeding facilities for a variety of birds including Great Spotted Woodpecker, Siskin, Reed Bunting and Blackcap. The marginal vegetation in the lodges provides cover for various warblers, waterfowl and dragonflies. Damselflies, once called 'devil's darning needles'; can often be seen hovering in the lodge vegetation and there is an abundance of Pond Skaters. The lodges create a good habitat for Common Frogs, Common Toads and Smooth Newts. In winter you may see a Heron which is an occasional visitor.
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Every effort is made to make sure that all the information is correct but we strongly recommend that you call Foxhill Bank Nature Reserve before you set off on your day out to confirm opening times and admission prices.
Please also note that the position on Google maps for Foxhill Bank Nature Reserve is a rough estimate using their postcode in the database and might be slightly out.
It may also be worth clicking the web link for Foxhill Bank Nature Reserve to see if there are any special events coming up or currently on.