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Batford Springs Local Nature Reserve is owned and managed by Harpenden Town Council. The majority of the conservation and maintenance work on the site is undertaken by Batford Springs Volunteers with assistance from the Council and other contractors. Such works are detailed in a 10 year management plan put together by the Volunteers with continuing input from a number of specialist advisors including the Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust.
In 1995, the area was accredited as a Reserve by Natural England. Its principal features are the fresh springs that serve a small network of chalk lined streams and ponds. The River Lea with its riverside walks flows through the site and there is open grassland and a small wooded area to explore. A childrens play area is located off Marquis Lane where there are also family friendly picnic tables.
Locally the River Lea from its source in Luton through Harpenden down to Wheathampsted has been made a focus for the Upper Lea Catchment Management Plan. Please see http://www.riverleacatchment.org.uk/index.php/upper-lea-home for more information.
In January 2015 the Batford Springs Local Nature Reserve was extended with the purchase of land in Marquis Lane. The land runs from the corner of Marquis Lane, eastwards to the bottom of Piggotshill Lane. A plan for to incorporate this area into the nature reserve is being drawn up in conjunction with the Batford Springs Volunteers and the Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust. A fully accessible path across the new area was installed in November 2016.
Location: The Reserve lies at the northern end of Station Road (B652). It is a 20 minute walk from the High Street and train station. Buses (620, 366, 636) pass the Reserve. Parking is available in nearby on the Lower Luton Road.
Riverfly Monitoring - Volunteers are taking part in the Riverfly Monitoring Initiative which is a national scheme to sample and identify river invertebrates, such as caddisflies, mayflies, stoneflies and freshwater shrimps. The number and type of these invertebrates gives a good indication of water quality, and a sudden decline in their numbers indicates that pollution has occurred.
Last updated about 3 months ago