The Nottinghamshire Countryside Appraisal, prepared by Nottinghamshire County Council, provides comprehensive and detailed information on the County’s countryside character.

Taking into account geology, geomorphology, soils, landscape history, landscape features, settlement patterns and styles and land-use, Newark and Sherwood is divided into five Regional Character Areas, which can be used to describe the biodiversity resource of the District: The Mid-Nottinghamshire Farmlands; The Trent Washlands; The East Nottinghamshire Sandlands; The South Nottinghamshire Farmlands and Sherwood.

Local Nature Reserves in Newark and Sherwood

Under powers granted to them by the National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949, local authorities have the power to declare Local Nature Reserves (LNRs).

LNRs, which receive specific protection from development under the planning system, are places with wildlife or geological features that are of special interest locally and which give people special opportunities to study and learn about them or simply enjoy and have contact with nature.

Two sites have been declared by the district council – Sherwood Heath LNR, near Ollerton, and Devon Park Pastures LNR (PDF File, 82kb) , in Newark.

In 2003 Farndon Parish Council used the rarely employed power of a parish council to declare Farndon Ponds LNR (PDF File, 248kb).

Designated Nature Conservation Sites

The district contains a number of sites which receive specific protection because of their international, national or county/ regional importance for nature conservation.

Special Area of Conservation

Birklands and Bilhaugh candidate Special Area of Conservation, the only designated site of international importance in Nottinghamshire, is a dry oak dominated woodland which owes much of its exceptional interest to the presence of many rare dead wood invertebrates and lichens. It forms part of the European Union wide Natura 2000 network. Click here for a location map.

In November 2002 part of Birklands and Bilhaugh cSAC was also declared as the Sherwood Forest National Nature Reserve – this includes the world famous ‘Major Oak’ of Robin Hood fame.

Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation

Acting upon information supplied by the Nottinghamshire Biological and Geological Records Centre (NBGRC), the district council has designated a series of ‘Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation’ (SINCs), identified for their local (regional/county/district) nature conservation value. These sites receive protection through the planning system and are representative examples of the more locally important nature conservation sites. For further information, please contact the NBGRC.

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