The nature reserve was created in 1991, as a form of compensation to the local community for the disturbance caused by Arpley Landfill Site. The car park is just over the swing bridge at the bottom of Moore Lane. The reserve covers about 200 acres and has extensive footpaths which link with the Forestry Commission site at Upper Moss Side and lead down to the River Mersey. It has a range of diverse habitats including lakes, woodland, heath and grassland. It is home to many birds, both resident and migratory, insects and wild flowers, including several species of orchid.
On a recent visit to the Cheshire Archives office, I discovered that plans had been lodged in 1975 by Warrington Council, for the creation of ‘Moore Country Park’. They were never implemented, but make interesting reading.
Two dumping grounds were to be flooded to create a wildfowl centre and an ambitious range of habitats was to be created – sandy heath, boggy heath, sand dunes (using sand from Southport), limestone habitat (using limestone from ICI’s lime beds at Witton), saltmarsh, freshwater ponds, arctic/alpine habit. The old bed of the Runcorn and Latchford canal was to be supplied with water from Mill Brook, creating a fishing facility.
An interpretative farm was planned at Moss Side Farm, with the emphasis on rare breeds such as Warwickshire longhorn cattle, Soay and Orkney sheep. It was seen as an opportunity for the public to visit a working farm.
Despite there being no facility of this type anywhere in the UK, the plans were never implemented and I have been unable to discover the reason why.
Moore Nature ReserveSee images »