Bolton Fell Moss (Cumbria BogLIFE Project)
This lowland raised bog has suffered following large-scale peat extraction leaving a bare peat surface. However, an agreement was reached with William Sinclair Holdings Ltd to cease extraction from November 2013, allowing for a restoration programme.
Natural England hope to restore Bolton Fell Moss by manipulating the hydrology, removing invasive vegetation e.g. birch and re-introducing peat-forming vegetation e.g. Sphagnum.
Restoration work delivered so far include:
- 50 ha of bare peat re-vegetated
- Building of peat bunds and dams
- Monitoring of ecological change.
In 2016, a 50 ha area of bare peat was re-wetted and re-vegetated by Barker and Bland. Vegetation harvested from the Pennines was used and consisted of Polytrichum mosses, feather mosses (Hypnaceae) and cotton grass. This was co-spread with Sphagnum-rich material, including S. magellanicum, S. papillosum, S. cuspidatum and S. capillifolium.
This vegetation was spread at the same time as peat bunds and dams were constructed on site. The vegetation carpet has proven resilient to wind-blow and heavy rainfall, with some Sphagnum growth already observed.
Project Name: Bolton Fell Moss (Cumbria BogLIFE Project)
Organisation / Lead partner: Natural England
Location: Carlisle, Cumbria
Approximate area covered: 381 ha
Conservation Status: Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), Special Area of Conservation (SAC)
Peat Habitats: Lowland raised bog
Project Type: Restoration
Year Project Began: 2014
Project End Date: 2019