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Chilterns Escarpment

The total area of this BOA is 1160ha, of which 105ha are Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and 376ha are Local Wildlife Sites.

The southern Chilterns escarpment running from Wargrave to Cookham and including some of the steeper sloped chalk valleys that run south in places. Also includes a few areas of adjacent riverside land where important sites are found.

Click here for the area map.

Geology: This area is largely chalk. There are patches of glacial gravel deposits on the gentler slopes and at the top of the escapement and small areas of Reading Beds (Lambeth Group). The riverside land is alluvium and river gravels.

Topography: A north facing escarpment that becomes west facing at the western end.

 

Biodiversity

Chalk grassland: There are scattered sites mainly at the western and eastern end. At the eastern end these include the escarpment at Cock Marsh SSSI, an area owned by the Woodland Trust and areas at Temple Hill Golf Course. There are small remnant areas in the west and very little in the centre except for a small area at Hurley Chalk Pit.

Woodland: There are extensive areas of woodland owned by the Woodland Trust in the east including Bisham Woods SSSIs. In the west there are large ancient woodland sites including Remenham Wood and the mainly replanted Rosehill Wood.

Fen: Wargrave Marsh is an extensive area of fen and wet grassland. There are marshy areas at Cock Marsh.

Other habitats and species: There is a small area of wet woodland with Loddon Lily near Henley Rowing Club. Cock Marsh is an extensive area of riverside grassland. Park Place is an important site for bats.

Geodiversity: There are important sites at Bisham and at Church Quarry Remenham

Access: There is access at the Woodland Trust reserves and at Cock Marsh. There are limited access opportunities in the west.

Targets and opportunities: Chalk grassland management, restoration and re-creation. Woodland management. Fen and wet grassland management at Wargrave Marsh, extending the site further south. Grassland restoration at Cock Marsh. Large areas of woodland and some chalk grassland is managed by the Woodland Trust. Cock Marsh is owned by the National Trust.

If you would like to get involved with projects in this BOA please contact us for current opportunities.