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This page contains information on removing Spanish or Hybrid Bluebells from your land, Local Nature Reserves, and Forest and Woodland Management in Tameside

Removing Spanish or Hybrid Bluebells From Your Land

If you wish to dig up the non-native variety of bluebell from your land, please dispose of them carefully. Plantlife International recommends that you dig the plants up once they have finished flowering, with their leaves intact, and left to dry in the sun to ensure the bulbs have been killed. If bulbs are composted before they are dead, they may propagate in the compost bin. Please remember that by law, you can only dig up wild plants on your own land, so do not remove any Spanish or Hybrid Bluebells not on your land.

Local Nature Reserves

Great Wood - Broadbottom

As one of the few remaining ancient woodland sites in Tameside, Great Wood is of special importance for nature conservation. The woodland is at least 400 years old and once formed part of the great Longdendale Forest.

Knott Hill - Ashton under Lyne

Knott Hill Reservoir was decommissioned by North West Water in the late 1970's and acquired by Tameside council in 1989. Since the lowering of the water level, wildlife has flourished and woodland has been establishing itself on the banks of the disused reservoir.

Hollinwood Branch Canal - Droylsden

Last used as a working waterway in 1932, the Hollinwood Branch Canal was built to link the Ashton Canal with Hollinwood, primarily to transport coal from the many collieries along its length.
There is a rich diversity of plant life along the canal including several species which are rare in Greater Manchester, making it a vitally important wetland area.

Haughton Dale - Denton/Hyde

Lying between the towns of Hyde and Denton, Haughton Dale is the largest Local Nature Reserve in Tameside. While much of the valley is easily accessible, Haughton Dale provides an opportunity to experience and enjoy wildlife in seemingly remote surroundings. The reserve contains a mosaic of important wildlife habitats.
Haughton Dale also has many historical and archaeological features, including the site of one of the first wireworks and a nationally important location for early glassmaking.

Hulmes and Hardy Woods - Denton

Maps of 1848 show numerous coal pits in this part of the Tame Valley, but by the late 1970's, dangerous shafts were filled and capped, and old shale heaps re-planted. The area now is a mix of ancient and modern woodland, hay meadows, and wetland.

Castle Clough and Cowbury Dale - Stalybridge

This is part of the northernmost valley leading down from the moors above Stalybridge, where heather moor mingles with developing oak and wet willow woodland either side of the brook. The ponds in the valley are now all that remains of the once industrial Carrbrook.

Hurst Clough - Mottram/ Hattersley

Hurst Clough leads down from Hattersley and Mottram to Great Wood, with ancient woodland in the steep valley and a mixture of grassland, scrub and recent woodland on the broader slopes elsewhere. At the northern end, this oasis, you may be surprised to know, hides an old tip.
Download the 'Hurst Clough Nature Walk' A short walk around this area, inspired by pupils from Arundale primary School Eco Group.

Rocher Vale - Ashton under Lyne/Park Bridge

This was part of the industrial hub of Park Bridge Iron Works, with mines, railways, factories and workers cottages, alongside the River Medlock. Some of this still remains but it is now natural heritage with acid grassland, heath and woodland, with the River Medlock running through it.
Download the 'Park Bridge Heritage Trail' A short walk to discover the industrial past of Park Bridge.

Looking after the Reserves

Our Rangers are responsible for preparing plans, organising events and activities, conducting surveys, and recording wildlife. They also carry out practical conservation tasks, work to improve access, and provide an environmental service to schools.
If you would like to help with conservation projects in the Local Nature Reserves, then please contact us at

Forest and Woodland Management     

Tameside is taking a pro-active approach to the sustainable management of its woodlands. We are one of only a handful of local authorities in the country to gain the UK Woodland Assurance Standard Link to External Website.
Have a look below at what we are doing to manage our forests and woodland in Tameside.


Hedgelaying as we know it today began in the 18th century. As open fields were enclosed they were marked out, first with ditches and then hedges. A hedge left to grow unchecked will eventually become a line of trees and of no use for retaining livestock.
Today hedgelayers are as much concerned with conserving our countryside as with making stock proof hedges. We now have a much greater knowledge of wildlife and how well-managed hedges are essential to the countryside. Hedgelaying can rejuvenate existing hedgerows by encouraging them to put on new growth and helping to improve their overall structure and strength and so can give greater weather protection to crops and wildlife.


Coppicing is the art of cutting of trees and shrubs to ground level allowing vigorous re-growth and a sustainable supply of timber for future generations. Coppiced tree can live many times longer than if the tree had not been cut down at all. Some trees are left to grow on to give an even more varied structure, and future opportunities for birds and bats to find holes to nest in.

The cut timber is usually left on site either as ‘habitat’ piles, or as ‘chipped’ piles, the latter being preferred where the soil needs developing to become more suitable for woodland plants and animals.

Deadwood for the Trees

When trees die and decay, they become part of the soil from which new trees will grow. Many other living things are part of this process and rely on it for their existence. Others feed on these organisms, and some use the softer wood to make homes for themselves and other species.
Over the last few years though there has been an increasing number of incidents when logs left as dead wood have been taken from sites, when to do so is theft as well as damaging to wildlife.
Whilst dead wood is important and we are trying to increase the amount, dumping of branches etc on our sites is not something we welcome as it may damage or shade valuable plants like bluebell. Worse still, it may have other garden waste with it and lead to invasive alien plants taking over areas of the wood. This again is not only damaging the wildlife but is illegal tipping and can lead to substantial fines.


Contact information

Send us a message
0161 342 3055
Tameside Greenspace
Hyde Depot
Park Road
SK14 4JT
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