The Nene Valley

Northants Nene ValleyNorthants Nene Valley

rebuilding habitats for wildlife

The Wildlife Trust for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire

360 view

Covering an area three times the size of the Great Fen, the spectacular Nene Valley is one of the largest Living Landscape schemes.

The vision is to create a living landscape along the river corridor through the heart of Northamptonshire, stretching along the entire length of the county and beyond into Peterborough.

The Trust currently manages a chain of 12 wetland reserves along the valley, including three that are actually in Peterborough near the River Nene. Within 20 years the vision aims to buffer, extend and join these reserves together to create just two or three larger and more resilient sites, rebuilding habitats for wildlife. In this process, visitor facilities will be improved, and education and outdoor learning will support the growth of healthy communities.

This scheme fits into the wider River Nene Regional Park strategy for the Nene Valley to become a benchmark area for multi-functional greenspace for local communities and tourists to enjoy.

Virtual tour by Mike McFarlane

360 view

What's happening?

We are:

  • Enhancing and safeguarding habitats such as wet woodland, wildflower meadows, reed beds, and coastal and floodplain grazing marsh
  • Working with farmers and landowners to support more wildlife-friendly land use
  • Working with local authorities and developers to deliver a naturally functioning environment for new and existing local communities
  • Influencing local policies including design and promotion of biodiversity, Local Wildlife Sites and habitat networks within local plans and Green Infrastructure guidance
  • Identifying key areas of land to purchase to join up our nature reserves.
  • Organising more surveys – once we know what is living in the area, we can work to protect it
  • Encouraging our members and the public to enjoy the Nene Valley and learn about its varied beauty

Start date: 2009

Scheme area: 51,700 hectares

Trust reserves within the scheme

Storton’s Pits/Duston Mill Meadow, Kingsthorpe Meadow, Barnes Meadow, Abington Meadows, Summer Leys, Southfield Farm Marsh, Ditchford Lakes and Meadows, Wicksteed Park nature reserve, Wilson’s Pits, Higham Ferrers Pits, Titchmarsh, Yarwell Dingle and Pond, Tailby Meadow, Barford Wood and Meadows, Wansford Pastures, Stanground Washes

This scheme is helping species including...

The sites are internationally important for wetland birds, attracting more than 40 different species in flocks as large as 20,000 birds, as well as 17 species of dragonfly and other wetland wildlife including the otter.

This scheme is also...

Helping wildlife adapt to climate change, reducing flood risk, improving access for people, providing recreational opportunities, enhancing green tourism potential, providing volunteering opportunities and practical skills training.


Natural England, Environment Agency, RSPB, local authorities, River Nene Regional Park, Nene Park Trust

To find out more

Email: | Tel: 0117 917 7270 | The Nene Valley

Living Landscapes

Find out more about our Living Landscape conservation work - targeting areas for landscape-scale nature conservation  and transforming places for people and wildlife.

Farming & wildlife

Find out more about our farmland conservation work with farmers and landowners, and on our own wildlife-friendly demonstration farms.