Barnsley Biodiversity Trust: Barnsley Biodiversity Action Plan. Last Updated October 2018 Floodplain grazing marsh at Wombwell Ings header

Conservation Floodplain Grazing Marsh sites are a priority in the Dearne Valley of Barnsley; some are being managed to promote wildlife and more can be done.

Factors causing loss or decline

Legal protection

Currently no Floodplain Grazing Marsh sites in Barnsley have statutory protection by designation as a SSSI.

However six sites are listed as Local Wildlife Sites (LWS) and there is a presumption against development or change of use when planning consent is required.

One has Local Nature Reserve status and some are managed as nature reserves without this designation.

Specific wildlife species found in Floodplain Grazing Marsh habitats are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act. This includes intentionally or recklessly disturbing birds at, on or near an ‘active’ nest. 

Defra Ecological Impact Assessments may apply to species rich Floodplain Grazing Marsh..

Many of the sites fall within statutory washland designation for which the Environment Agency has regulatory responsibility.

DEFRA Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) Regulations may apply.

Positive conservation management


Floodplain meadows partnership

RSPB: Grazing grassland

RSPB: Rewetting grassland

RSPB: Grassland management for birds

NE: Assessing grassland priority habitat

NE: Grassland management handbook

NE: Horses & grassland management