Nature on your doorstep thanks to LNRs

Published: Tuesday 12 April 2022

This image shows a child enjoying one of the outdoor play areas at a Local Nature Reserve in South Lanarkshire

Residents across South Lanarkshire can now easily learn about and experience nature on their doorstep.

A total of 17 Local Nature Reserves (LNRs) have been declared across the area, with 16 new sites adding to the existing one at Langlands Moss. LNRs are locally important areas of natural heritage, usually close to towns and cities, where people can enjoy the outdoors.

Full details on all 17 sites, including a draft management statement which will be developed into a full site plan in partnership with the local community, can be found on the council website.

Executive Director of Community and Enterprise Resources, David Booth, said: “By declaring these sites as LNRs, not only do we protect the natural heritage, but it means people can learn about and enjoy nature close to their homes.

“It is fantastic news to have so many LNRs across South Lanarkshire and we will work closely with local communities to develop them over the coming months and years.”

Local volunteers and community groups will continue to be supported across South Lanarkshire, with regular work sessions, site improvements, events and activities, and committee meetings.

Many of these sites already have active and amazing local people involved with their improvement and enjoyment, and the Council welcomes anyone who would like to get involved with their local site.

Outdoor play will be supported with access already provided to some groups with funding for training and equipment, building capacity to help groups run their own outdoor activities and providing opportunities for children to explore nature close to their homes.

Two of the LNRs – Hamilton Low Parks and Backmuir Woods – included areas of Common Good Land, so were subject to consultation under the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015. No adverse comments were received which meant the two areas could also become LNRs.

Many of the sites have seen improvements over the last few years such as Fernbrae Meadows near Cathkin and Fernhill which is now a place accessible for people with improved biodiversity value such as new meadows, waterways and woodlands, after being vacant and derelict.