Path opened giving access to Greenlee Lough
A PROJECT has been completed to allow more people to enjoy Northumberland’s largest natural lake set against a backdrop of Hadrian’s Wall.
A 500-metre boardwalk has been built to improve public access to the remote Greenlee Lough, which being north of the Wall offers a barbarian’s view of the frontier.
Greenlee is designated as a site of special scientific interest, a national nature reserve and a European Special Area of Conservation, making it one of the most important areas of biodiversity in Britain and Europe. The new route there has been opened by Tony Gates, chief executive of Northumberland National Park Authority, and Rob Aubrook, Natural England’s North East director.
The boardwalk links the lough to the public road via a new footpath through farmland, which has been made possible through Higher Level Stewardship funds managed by Natural England.
It is intended that this access will protect the sensitive environment of the lough while encouraging visitors with a particular interest in nature to divert from the Hadrian’s Wall national trail.
The 195 hectares of the Greenlee Lough site includes the 45-hectare lake and adjoining areas of reedbed and fen, raised peat mire and wet woodland. It is owned and managed by Northumberland National Park.
The shallow open wetland is an important staging post for winter migrating birds and visiting osprey, and is home to otters, the rare native white-clawed crayfish, and unusual aquatic plant life.
The large heath butterfly lives and breeds amongst the flowers and grasses of the bog and warblers and buntings prosper in the reeds and woodland.