The Forest of Bowland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) appointed Conservefor on behalf of the Pendle Hill Landscape Partnership to undertake the peat restoration of Barley Moor on the summit of Pendle Hill in Lancashire.
Three areas on Barley Moor were identified for restoration. These exposed areas on the summit of Pendle consisted of large areas of exposed peat and natural gullies with actively eroding sides.
The areas required the following restoration work:
- Machine work to re-profile hags and gully sides back to an angle of 45° and stretch out any remaining vegetation to cover the bare peat
- Installation of low peat dams and coir logs to slow flow around the base of hags and bare peat lenses
- Re-vegetate bare peat by applying lime, seed, fertiliser and heather brash
- Inoculation of wet areas created by dams with 1000 sphagnum moss plug plants
- Installation of timber dams across gullies to slow flow and create wet features
- Supply and planting of 1200 cotton grass plug plants
Our experienced peatland restoration team began by, using specially adapted, 7 tonne 360 excavators fitted with 900mm wide tracks and tilt-rotate bucket attachment. The modifications allow the work to be carried out with minimal disturbance to the surrounding vegetation. Small peat dams were also created at intervals along the gully bottoms to slow the water to prevent further erosion.
Our peat restoration team then used our tracked Yanmar tractor with Rytec heather mower to harvest the heather from nearby heather beds. The heather brash was spread by hand over the hags and gully sides and on any exposed peat creating a protective layer.
1000 sphagnum plug plants and 1200 cotton grass plugs were then planted onto areas of bare peat and the shallow pools behind the peat and timber dams.
Lime, moorland seed and fertiliser were applied to the repaired areas to aid vegetation recovery across the site.