131 FARNHAM BRIDGE MARSH

PART OF BROOKLEA NURSERY

OS REF:SK589133

Looking over the swamp to the arched bridge over the old A6. May 2002

Date: 11th May 2002

We went into the swamp area that borders the old A6 and Rothley Brook. It is a piece of land that has a series of channels that you can only see by walking on the land. There was a good view of the bridge over the A6 and it was interesting to see the number of arches, which must all have carried water in the past. It was understood that in the past the brook was much wider and this certainly indicates it to be a true fact.

Four arches in view. May 2002

The left hand arch of the five arch bridge. Note the granite piece. May 2002

Rothley Brook at the corner of the marsh near to Ancient Tree 58. Was there a bridge over the brook in this area? May 2002

11th May 2002

There was a great abundance of stinging nettles and it is advisable to wear wellingtons and thick trousers. The wild flowers are starting to bloom with Lady's Smock, Silverweed and Buttercups much in evidence. There was a good patch of Marsh Marigold. We did not enter the very marshy areas but these are indicated by reeds and best avoided. It could be very easy to get stuck in the mud.

View from the marsh to Loughborough Road and top of Homefield Lane. Rothley Brook runs between the rough land and the pasture field.May 2002

View from the marsh towards Mountsorrel. May 2002

Rothley Brook from the marsh site. May 2002

The marsh should not be entered! May 2002

11th May 2002

There are some interesting stands of willow and, on the border with the adjoining pasture field, there was one with a three metre girth which was recorded as an Ancient Tree 57 and Ancient Tree 58 with a girth of 3.5m. There were others on the banks of the Rothley Brook but not on the land being recorded.

Ancient Willow Tree 58 with a girth of 3.5m. May 2002

Ancient Tree 58 is 'hidden' by other fallen willows. May 2002

11th May 2002

A further visit will be needed when the flowers are more forward and dragonflies and damselflies on the wing.
Whitethroats were calling along the hawthorn hedgerows and this would be the perfect nesting site due to the thick, undisturbed vegetation abutting it.
In the brook there were areas of exposed mud with vegetation and unidentified mammal prints.

The area has all the makings of a SINC (Site of Interest for Nature Conservation).

Willows surround the marsh field. May 2002

Looking from the marsh field towards Mountsorrel. May 2002

Date: 28th July 2003

I have today received a copy of the survey from Charnwood Wildlife and it looks as though it might be approved as a SINC. I rang Charnwood Wildlife but Richard Allan, the Ecologist, left on the 26th July so I cannot talk to him about it. I did speak to Francoise Scrire, Senior Ecologist, but she doubted that the survey covered the marsh.

The survey was completed by Charnwood Wildlife on the 17th June 2003 under reference W 5813/3. The Conservation Status was recorded as Parish Level Site and a candidate for designation as a SINC (Site of Interest for Nature Conservation). A list of species is available under the above reference.

In June 2004 I contacted Leicestershire County Council for an update on the Conservation Status but nothing recorded. Charnwood Wildlife does not now exist.

Date: 7th June 2004

Confirmation still not received from Holly Hayes that the site will become a SINC.
I made a further visit to see what had happened to the site after two years. It was completely overgrown and clogged up with vegetation, especially stinging nettles. There was no safe way to get to the swampy areas and we even tried to get access from a nearby field without success. It is a good example of what can happen to a site that has no management, the swamp vegetation completely fills the basins and where moorhens used to swim is no more.

The hawthorn hedgerow to the right of the entrance gate that I said in May 2002 would be good for Whitethroats has been laid and a ditch dug out resulting in the destruction of the thick vegetation. An example of management that destroys habitat in an area where nothing else is managed.
Water was being pumped from the Rothley Brook to water plants at the nursery.
On the banks of the brook were Banded demoiselles and some good-sized unidentified fish in the brook.

FARNHAM BRIDGE MARSH IN 2013

Looking from the old A6 to Farnham Bridge Marsh. May 2013

Looking from the old A6. May 2013

Farnham Bridge on the old A6. Farnham Bridge Marsh to the left. May 2013

The Brickmakers used to build Farnham Bridge. Just another bit of history. May 2013

Walking into Farnham Bridge Marsh. Brooklea Nursery Fields Site 130 to the right. May 2013

Looking over the marshy area. Rothley Brook to the left. May 2013

Looking over Rothley Brook to Site 189 Homefield (1) and Homefield Lane. May 2013

Rothley Brook to the left. May 2013

Looking to Farnham Bridge. May 2013

Farnham Bridge was mainly cleared of debris in April 2013 to help with water flow and flooding. May 2013

SITE 131 FARNHAM BRIDGE MARSH IN 2015

Looking from Farnham Bridge, Loughborough Road, with Farnham Bridge Marsh to the right and Site 189 Homefield 1 to the left. February 2015

Looking over Site 131 with Site 130 Brooklea Nursery buildings in the distance. February 2015

Farnham Bridge Marsh to the right of Rothley Brook from Farnham Bridge. February 2015

Farnham Bridge Marsh looking to Site 130 Brooklea Nursery. February 2015

Farnham Bridge from Loughborough Road looking over to Farnham Bridge Marsh. February 2015

Farnham Bridge from Site 189 Homefield 1 with Farnham Bridge Marsh over the Rothley Brook. February 2015

Looking over Farnham Bridge Marsh to Brooklea Site 130. February 2015

Farnham Bridge Marsh from Site 189 Homefield 1 over Rothley Brook. February 2015

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