A selection of the finest Wildlife Trust wildflower meadows. Best visited in May and June.
Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire Wildlife Trust (BBOWT)
College Lake - One of the crowning jewels of this reseve is the summer display of cornfield flowers; whole fields come alive with a riot of colour, the song of skylarks and the buzz of insects.
Chimney Meadows (pictured right) - Arable land was purchased as part of an appeal to restore the tradidtional hay meadows as part of the national Biffa Award funded Coronation Meadows project.
Iffley Meadows - These ancient wet meadows are famous for their annual display of snake's-head fritillaries and designated as an SSSI.
Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire & Northamptonshire Wildlife Trust (BCN)
Chettisham Meadow - Cowslips are abundant in this beautiful meadow from March - May with a spectacular display of green-winged orchids in late April - May.
Brecknock Wildlife Trust
Vicarage Meadows - This 3.6 hectares of wildflower rich meadow and wet pasture is set on the side of a hill in the Irfon valley and lies adjacent to the Nant Irfon National Nature Reserve. Look out for the yellow flower spikes of bog asphodel in the damper parts.
Cae Bryntywarch - This meadow is home to a range of colourful plants. In spring it is flecked with the pinks of common spotted and heath spotted orchids, which are then followed by the yellows of bog asphodel and dyer’s greenweed. In the summer, the dense lilac-blue heads of devil's-bit scabious flowers add to the colourful display.
Trewalkin Meadow - This small, damp, flower-rich meadow at the foot of the Black Mountains reveals a glimpse into how much of Brecknock would have looked 60 years ago.
Cumbria Wildlife Trust
Kilnmire Farm - Part of a traditional working farm, this upland hay meadow backs right onto the open fell.
Cornwall Wildlife Trust
Chyverton - This 10 acre nature reserve in mid-Cornwall close to the A30 consists of flower-rich meadows, ancient Cornish hedgerows and areas of mixed woodland. Because the meadows have been largely unimproved for agricultural purposes, they provide a variety of habitats for a diverse range of wildlife.
Hartington Meadows (pictured right) - Bursting with the colour of wildflowers throughsummer, this grassland nature reserve is cut for hay in mid-July.
Priestcliffe Lees - Offering extensive views across the Wye Valley in the Peak District, this SSSI designated reserve lies on a limestone hillside above the famous Monsal Trail, a disused railway track, now a cycleway and a great way to explore Priestcliffe Lees.
Rose End Meadows - This reserve is made up of 11 small fields, showing how Derbyshire's limestone farmland would have looked 100 years ago.
Devon Wildlife Trust
Cricklepit Mill - This unusual urban meadow can be found behind Devon Wildlife Trust's office in central Exeter.
Dorset Wildlife Trust
Kingcombe - This natire reserve nestling deep in the Dorset countryside is still managed by traditional farming methods. The result is a patchwork of flower-rich fields and grassland broken up by hedgerows, streams and ponds.
Durham Wildlife Trust
Hannah's Meadow - This upland hay meadow and a grazing pasture are set within the traditional farming landscape of Teesdale, part of the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Gwent Wildlfe Trust
New Grove Meadow - The New Grove Meadows reserve provides an unforgettable sight in May and June when thousands of orchid spikes, set against other wildflowers, give a wonderful display of colour. From the reserve there are superb views across fine lowland scenery to the Great Skirrid and Sugar Loaf, which are backed by the full sweep of South Wales’ other mountains.
Pentwyn Farm - Pentwyn Farm has survived virtually unchanged for centuries. It includes one of the largest areas of flower-rich grassland remaining in Gwent and provides an opportunity to see hay meadows as they would have looked in the past, before the advent of intensive farming.
Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust
Foxlease Meadows - In May-July when the fields are flooded with flowers you're likely to have the meadow to yourself!
Herefordshire Wildlife Trust
Stockings Meadow - This lovely grassland nature reserve lies on a steep west-facing slope above Hackley Brook. On sunny days you can see bumblebees, butterflies and day-flying moths.
The Sturts - This nature reserve is comprised of seasonally flooded meadow and pasture with a small cider orchard on the drier ground.
The Parks - An impressive sweep of grassland lying on the gentle north and south facing slopes of the Dulas Brook. Flowers such as pignut, common and heath spotted orchid and cuckoo flower can be found here.
Hertfordshire and Middlex Wildlife Trust
Hunsdon Mead - During the winter the Mead floods and large flocks of lapwing and golden plover come to feed.
Blagrove Common - The Common is at its best in late spring when carpeted with orchids.
Alpine Meadow - At only 0.8ha this grassland nature reserve is quite small but is rich in wildflowers and butterflies.
Frogmore meadow - This marshy meadow has a range of wetter plants including marsh marigold, greater bird's foot trefoil and ragged robin.
Rye Meads - The seasonal flooding of the meadow combined with the rich soils has resulted in a mosaic of habitats, consisting of reedbeds, marshy grasslands and fen vegetation
The Wildlife Trust for Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside
Freeman's Pasture - This nature reserve is one of the few species-rich grasslands remaining in Lancashire. Over 120 plant species have been recorded here.
Leicestershire & Rutland Wildlife Trust
Cribbs Meadow -
Herbert's Meadow - The meadow's diversity is thanks to the complex soil conditions found within the area.
Merry's Mewadow - The meadows have maintained the ridge and furrow pattern where cowslip, quaking-grass, greenwinged orchid and adders-tounge grow on the ridges.
Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust
Little Scrubbs Meadow - A woodland edge on all sides enhances the value of the reserve for birds and insects.
Red Hill - This grassland nature reserve is probably an ancient fragment of Lincolnshire Wold downland, and there is a rich assemblage of chalk plants here and in the quarry, including localised species such as felwort, yellow-wort, basil thyme, kidney vetch and pyramidal and bee orchids.
Notts Wildlife Trust
Ashton's Meadow -Ashton's Meadow is a traditionally maintained ancient meadow that has not seen the use of artificial methods or pesticides for many years. You can still see the original ridges and furrows, while admiring a rich diversity of flowers and wildlife. Spring and summer are the best time to see the array of wild flowers on the reserve, while the grassland butterflies are best seen from July.
Sheffield Wildlife Trust
Carr House Meadows - Here fields are hemmed by drystone walls and hedgrows, and insects such as butterflies, beetles, spiders and grasshoppers all thrive in the rich foliage.
Somerset Wildlife Trust
Fivehead Arable Fields - This reserve is home to nationally scarce wildflowers including broad-leaved spurge, spreading hedge-parsley and slender tare.
Suffolk Wildlife Trust
Fox Fritillary Meadow - The largest of four remaining snake's head fritillary sites in Suffolk this reserve is a fragment of ancient meadow.
Surrey Wildlife Trusts
Sheepleas - The site is a mosaic of woodlands and grassland that supports a huge diversity of wildlife.
Feystown - This small meadow is a prime site in Ireland for the rare wood cranesbill.
The Umbra - Situated on the beautiful north coast of Ulster this undisturbed complex of sand dunes is a fantastic spot for butterflies and moths.
Blakehill Farm - Once a military base this 235 hectare expanse of grassland has a rich variety of wildflowers.
Clattinger Farm - A 170 acre remnant of lowland meadow and one of the finest places to see snakeshead fritillaries in the UK.
Worcestershire Wildlife Trust
Eades Meadow - With more than 180 plant species this 31 arce reserve is a real gem.
Knapp and Papermill - This reserve covers 27 hectares of meadows and woodlands abd neadows.
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