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SITE 154 THE MINERAL LINE (DISUSED)

OS REF:SK563156-SK570142

Date: 2nd April 2003

This Mineral Line is now disused but it ran from the Mountsorrel Quarry to the Great Central Railway Swithland Sidings. I do not have any of the history of this line and have not yet located the owner who may still be the Mountsorrel Granite Company.

It is easy to gain access from the Brickyard Farm field, Site 153, onto the line. It is very overgrown and neglected but it would be interesting to see what plants might be growing in early summer as these old lines do come up with interesting flora depending on what was used as base hardcore.

There is evidence of a dried up pond but as the weather has been so hot and dry it may be that at some point it would become wet again.

Further work in needed on this site so contact will need to be made with the quarry.

13th January 2006

A Planning Application has been put in by the Vehicle Preservation Society to build a large storage shed on Mill Spinney (Swithland Parish) and lay track along a length on the disused mineral line. This shed is to be used to house steam railway carriages and other items to be restored. The LRWT has done a report on the natural history, which includes badgers and bat roosts. I have sent in my letter of objection. Report 05/3528/2 dated 22 Nov 2005

16th March 2006

Good news, planning application withdrawn. However, a start had been made on clearing the site of trees. The Mineral Line is still intact.

19th November 2006

Bad news, appeal lodged with Charnwood Borough Council. Written objection made again.

In October 2005 an Ecological Survey was carried out by N. S. Talbot of Leicestershire Wildlife Consultancy on Mill Spinney and the disused Mineral Line. This survey is held under Ref: 05/3528/2 22 Nov 2005 by the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust.

14th January 2007

A visit made with Brian to look at the trees in this now threatened area. The field, Cornfield (1), abutting the Mineral Line has no ancient trees but the next field Cornfield (2) has. I measured six, two Ash have a girth exceeding 3.0m, Trees 568 and 569, and an Oak Tree 566 has a girth of 3.4m. These trees are now vulnerable depending on the outcome of the appeal detailed above.

The interior of the old line is very overgrown in parts, hence a winter visit. A further visit will be made to look at the remaining part of the line down to Swithland Reservoir.

11th June 2008

Following news of the clearance of the inner part of the Mineral Line Brian and I made a visit to see what was happening. We had seen a notice in a window in Mountsorrel asking for volunteers to clear the Mineral Line so that mineral trucks could be run from the quarry as an historical act. It seems to me that it is a 'hidden' way into re-opening the line under the guise of history from Mountsorrel when really it is the backdoor to opening up the area by the reservoir for the building of a shed by the Vehicle Restoration Society.

All the inner part of the line is being cleared, some areas were completely cleared with the tree stumps being pulled out and other areas where the trees had been cut down to about 5 feet ready to be pulled out with their roots. Some really good trees have been felled but the major trees along the boundary have been retained along with the boundary hedgerows.

Yet another great loss of habitat in the parish.

Site 154 Ancient Ash Tree 134 with a girth of 3.7m. March 2003

Site 154 Ancient Ash Tree 134 on the edge of the Mineral Line. January 2007

Oak Tree 564 in the centre with a girth of 1.9m. Mineral Line Site 154 to the right, Site 234 Cornfield 2 to the left. January 2007

Site 154 Ash Tree 565 with a girth of 2.5m on the boundary of the Mineral Line adjacent to Site 234 Cornfield 2. January 2007

Site 154. Ash Tree 565 with a home for wildlife. January 2007

Site 154. Ancient Oak Tree 566 with a girth of 3.4m on the boundary of the Mineral Line adjacent to Site 234 Cornfield 2. January 2007

Site 154 Oak Tree 567 in the centre with a girth of 2.2m on the Mineral Line boundary adjacent to Site 234 Cornfield 2. January 2007

Site 154 Ancient Ash Tree 568 with a girth of 3.45m on the boundary of the Mineral Line adjacent to Site 234 Cornfield 2. January 2007

Site 154 Ancient Ash Tree 569 with a girth of 3.3m on the Mineral Line boundary adjacent to Site 234 Cornfield 2. January 2007

Site 154 Oak Tree 570 with a girth of 2.4m. January 2007

Site 154 Possible Pond Site on the north side? April 2003

Site 154 Possible Pond Site on the north side as above photo? April 2003

Site 154 Another view of a possible Pond Site as above? April 2003

Site 154 An interesting 'kink' in the Mineral Line boundary towards Swithland Lane. January 2007

Site 154 Mineral Line to the left. Looking towards Swithland Reservoir. January 2007

Site 154 Inside the Mineral Line looking to Swithland Reservoir. January 2007

Site 154 Inside the Mineral Line looking to Swithland Reservoir. January 2007

Site 154 Inside the Mineral Line looking to Swithland Reservoir. January 2007

Site 154 Inside the Mineral Line with typical Ash Tree structure. January 2007

Site 154 Mineral Line to the right. Looking to Swithland Lane. January 2007

Site 154 Mineral Line to the right. Looking towards Swithland Lane. January 2007

Site 154 Inside the Mineral Line looking towards Swithland Lane. January 2007

Site 154 Inside the Mineral Line looking towards Swithland Lane. January 2007

Site 154 Inside the Mineral Line looking towards Swithland Lane. January 2007

Site 154 Inside the Mineral Line with Tree 570 on the left. January 2007

Site 154 Ancient hedgerow on the Mineral Line boundary with Site 234 Cornfield 2. January 2007

Site 154 Looking down the Mineral Line towards Swithland Lane. January 2007

Site 154 Looking down the Mineral Line towards Swithland Lane. January 2007

Site 154 Mineral Line to the right and Site 234 Cornfield 2 to the left. January 2007

Site 154 Mineral Line on the left looking to Swithland from Site 235 Cornffield 3. January 2007

Site 154 Inside the Mineral Line towards Swithland. January 2007

Site 154 Inside the Mineral Line near the reservoir towards Swithland Lane. January 2007

Site 154 Mineral Line to the right near the Reservoir towards Swithland Lane from Site 234 Cornfield 3. January 2007

Site 154 Inside the Mineral Line near the reservoir looking towards Swithland Lane. January 2007

Site 154 Large stones near the Parish Boundaries of Rothley and Swithland close to the reservoir. January 2007

Site 154 Large posts near the Parish Boundaries of Rothley and Swithland close to the reservoir. January 2007

Site 154 Parish Boundary post as above? January 2007

Site 154 Large post hole near the Parish Boundaries of Rothley and Swithland inside the Mineral Line close to the reservoir. January 2007

Site 154 The Mineral Line opens up into Mill Spinney in the Parish of Swithland close to the reservoir. January 2007

Site 154 Towards Mill Spinney by the reservoir there is very good evidence of Dogs Mercury. This is an indicator that the area was once ancient woodland. January 2007

Site 154 Bridge over the Mineral Line at the far end of Swithland Lane near to Kinchley Lane. April 2007

Site 154 Tree and shrub clearance begins just over the bridge on Swithland Lane. June 2008

Site 154 More tree and shrub clearance close to Swithland Lane bridge. June 2008

Site 154 Good sized trees removed from the Mineral Line close to the bridge on Swithland Lane. June 2008

Site 154 More clearance of the Mineral Line. June 2008

Site 154 More clearance of the Mineral Line. July 2008

Site 154. This picture is on public view at Rothley Great Central Railway Station. August 2006

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