Unimproved species-rich grasslands are a scarce and declining habitat nationally, and the North East region has important range of grassland habitats. The Magnesian Limestone grasslands of east Durham, support a vegetation community that is found nowhere else in the world, while in the uplands of the Pennine Dales can be found examples of traditionally managed hay meadows. The old mine spoils and river gravels of the North Pennines also support calaminarian grasslands - grasslands distinguished by the presence of species that can withstand soils contaminated with heavy metals. Also of note are the parched grasslands of the Whin Sill - the quartz dolermite intrusion that forms the escapement on which the Roman Wall is built - a habitat distinct to the region.
Where can I see examples of grassland in the North East?
Follow the links below for more information about grassland sites that are owned or managed by members of the North East Biodiversity Forum. Please note that some of the sites are in remote locations and may have difficult terrain - refer to the individual web page for more details about site access.
Magnesian Limestone grassland
Upland Calcareous Grassland
Upland Hay Meadows
Lowland Meadows and Pastures
Roman Wall Escapement
Lowland Dry Acid Grassland