Ince Moss (Wigan Flashes)

Introduction

Ince Moss, a five hectare site in the Wigan Flashes, is one of the largest areas of peatland outside the Astley/Chat Moss complex and therefore forms an important stepping stone for wildlife. Purple moor grass, bracken and Sphagnum spp. mosses dominate. The moss would have once spread across much of Wigan, but land drainage and changes in landform, following industrialisation and subsidence, has slowly eroded the peatland away.

Restoration Delivered

Ince Moss has been drained in the past, and Lancashire Wildlife Trust and the Wigan Flashes Working Group are trying to repair the damage caused.

A series of bunds have been used to prevent water movement in the ditches and dams have been put in place. In addition the steep-sided main drain has been reprofiled to produce shallow margins, allowing bog vegetation to re-establish.

Willow and birch, which had colonised the drier areas have been removed to enable characteristic bog vegetation to return.

This work has seen an increase in the water table of 15 centimetres, which should help prevent trees from re-colonising.

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Project Name: Ince Moss (Wigan Flashes)

Organisation / Lead partner: Lancashire Wildlife Trust

Location: Wigan, Lancashire

Approximate area covered: 260 ha

Conservation Status: Local Nature Reserve

Predominately: Lowland

Peat Habitats: Lowland raised bog

Project Type: Restoration, Management

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