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SITE 253 ROTHLEY LODGE WILDLIFE SITE

OS REF:SK592141

It was announced in March 2013 that this land has now been leased to the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust by Charnwood Borough Council. Charnwood Wildlife, as part of Charnwood Borough Council, does not now exist.

Date: 16th August 2006

This first visit was to see how the land had changed since the building of the LPC Industrial units in 2005/6. (Site 304)

Charnwood Wildlife has all the details about the land, which is owned now by Charnwood Borough Council after the demolition of Rothley Lodge Farm and the permission to build for industry. The land all around the units will be known as the Charnwood Lodge Wildlife Site and overseen by Charnwood Wildlife. It may at some point be leased or given to the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust as they now have the Soar Valley land as part of their Nature Reserves from Wanlip Meadows, Cossington Meadows, with Rothley Lodge Wildlife Site, then Mountsorrel Meadows (Site 254). We must make sure that it retains the name of Rothley if this happens.

The approach to Site 253 Rothley Lodge Wildlife Site. Looking back to the roundabout by Rowena Garden centre. LPC Site 304 to the left. September 2006

Looking to Site 253 with the LPC Site 304 to the right. September 2006

The road becomes the access to Site 253 with the slope of the LPC Site 304 to the right. September 2006

Continuing along the access to Site 253 with the slope surrounding the LPC to the right and Site 254 Mountsorrel Meadows to the left which is in the Parish of Rothley. September 2006

Date: 16th August 2006

Brian and I met by chance Ron Pennington at the site who is the Managing Director of the LPC and he told us about the planting of the trees all around the perimeter, the formation of the pond to take run-off from the site, and the land that it covered for wildlife. Françoise Scrire from Charnwood Wildlife was doing a survey of the land so that was very useful as she was able to tell me what was happening. I arranged to visit her at Charnwood Borough Council to find out more, especially which land in Rothley was to be included in Mountsorrel Meadows.

We had a walk around the wildlife area and took photographs. A return visit will be made as it was very active with birds and it would be interesting to keep a record.

The end of the approach road to Site 253 with Pennington's Pond Site 305 to the left. August 2006

Site 253. Looking to the slopes around the LPC Site 304 with Pennington's Pond Site 305 to the right. September 2006

9th September 2006.

A return visit was made with Christine Nelson to look at the birds and walk the area. It was really good around the pond that I have named Pennington's Pond after Ron. (Pond 34, Site 305).

We recorded 50+ Goldfinches, 45 Linnets, 2 Pied wagtails and 2 Hobbies, one of which sat in a tree giving good views.

More photographs were taken of the young trees in Site 304 LPC, which will soon need re-tying, but this work is still under contract. Weedkiller is sprayed all around the planting, which perhaps gives the young roots a chance, but there is nothing to stop the banks losing their topsoil when it rains. There was a lot of evidence of this.

We again met Ron Pennington who was walking along the path to the pond so we had another discussion about the trees and plantings. He knows what has been planted and the state of the trees, especially a few of the larger ones that have died. Hopefully they will be replaced at a suitable time. When they have all grown up the industrial units will be nicely hidden and it should be a very good place for wildlife assuming that dogs are kept under control as there are footpaths through the site and along the River Soar.

The end of the approach road to Site 253 with Sileby Mill in the distance. August 2006

Site 253. August 2006

Site 253. Sileby Mill in the distance. August 2006

Site 253 Sileby Mill in the distance. August 2006

Site 253 Looking back to the pond channel. August 2006

Site 253. Good marsh for birds. August 2006

Site 253. The slope around the LPC Site 304 to the right. August 2006

Site 253. Looking to the River Soar. August 2006

Site 253. August 2006

Site 253 with Pennington's Pond Site 305 to the left. September 2006

Site 253 Looking to Sileby Mill. August 2006

Site 253. Looking to Sileby Mill. September 2006

Site 253. Looking to Sileby Mill. September 2006

Site 253. The slopes around the LPC Site 304 to the left. September 2006

Looking to the slope around the LPC Site 304 over Site 254 Mountsorrel Meadows although this site is within the Parish of Rothley. September 2006

Site 253. The slopes around the LPC Site 304 to the right. September 2006

Site 253. September 2006

Site 253. Looking to the slopes of the LPC Site 304 to the left and Pennington's Pond Site 305 to the right. August 2006

Site 253. Showing the young trees on the slope around the LPC Site 304. September 2006

Site 253. Showing the young trees on the slopes around the LPC Site 304. September 2006

Site 253. The slope around the LPC Site 304 to the left. Lovely meadow grasses in June 2008

15th June 2008

Brian and I parked at the Wyevale Garden Centre and cut through to the footpath that runs to Sileby Mill through the Rothley Lodge Wildlife Site. The fields look lovely as they have been allowed to grow with abundant grasses and will hopefully grow into colourful mixed wildflower meadows. There was much evidence of damselflies and other wildlife but no time to do any sort of survey. This will have to happen when I have finished all my 'admin' recording the actual sites in the parish.

The main objective of this visit was to plot the extent of the LPC (Leicester Paper Company) and to take photographs of the area.

The area from the back of the Garden Centre where the footpath runs along the LPC boundary is developing into a really good wildlife area. These 'pockets' of land are great as long as the weedkiller does not get used.

Before the building of the LPC Site 304 an archaeological survey was carried out. This shows a piece of grooved ware (3,600-2,500 BC) made from local Mountsorrel clay by one of Rothley's earliest communities.

ROTHLEY LODGE WILDLIFE SITE IN 2013

Since starting this project to records fields in Rothley this is the area that has seen great change with the building of the Leicester Paper Company and changes to field boundaries. The site numbering has had to change because fields that were there when the project started are no longer recognisable. To look at the whole area please click on the following sites as they form the new Rothley Lodge Wildlife Site:

LPC Site 304 to the left and the River Soar to the right. Looking to Site 253. June 2013

LPC to the right and the River Soar on the left. From the footpath running from the old A6 by Franham Bridge to Sileby Mill. June 2013

More of the above footpath. River Soar to the right. June 2013

More of the above footpath. LPC to the right and River Soar to the left. June 2013

Plantation at the back of the LPC. June 2013

Plantation to the back of the LPC to the left. June 2013

Front area to the LPC Site 304. Good for lapwings. June 2013

The front area to the LPC. Road to the site at the rear. June 2013

Front of the LPC. June 2013

Road leading to the entrance to the LPC on the right. June 2013

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