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IPA Factsheet - Peterborough Brick Pits
Site code
CountryUnited Kingdom
Administrative regionEast of England (Cambridgeshire)
Central co-ordinates52o 32' N / 0o 0' E map
Area335
Altitude0 - 20
 

 Site Description Peterborough Brick Pits IPA is composed of a sequence pits dug for brick-clay. Extraction has ceased and many pits have filled with water and now support communities of aquatic plants. The area is identified as being internationally important for stoneworts, with one of the richest florae in the UK. The area also has geological importance as being a fine example of deposits laid down during the Ipswichian Interglacial period. It is the combination of these deposits with more recent overlying marine sediments that defines the zoom of opportunity which surrounds the suite of score sites; any new pit dug in this area is likely to acquire a stonewort flora of interest. Peterborough Brick Pits IPA is composed of a sequence pits dug for brick-clay. Extraction has ceased and many pits have filled with water and now support communities of aquatic plants. The topography is varied and pits vary in size and shape, providing a myriad of differing opportunities for wildlife including great crested newts for which one of the core sites is notified. The area is identified as being internationally important for stoneworts, with one of the richest florae in the UK. Most notable among the core sites is Orton Pit SSSI which is comprised of a sequence of ridges and water-filled furrows; the site provides a unique insight into succession processes, as the furrows and ridges were created inan annual sequence. As a result of the underlying clay, the water in the pools is slightly saline, supporting species that are usually found at the coast and in Scottish lochs. The spoil heaps surrounding the pits and ponds also provide a variety of habitats; bare earth habitats here are particularly important for invertebrates such as wasps bees ants and beetles.

 Botanical Significance Noted for stonewort interest. The IPA is noted for its stonewort species, including Chara aculeolata, C. aspera, C. contraria, C. curta, C. globularis, C. hispida, C. virgata, C. vulgaris, Nitella flexilis agg., Tolypella glomerata and the Endangered C. canescens. The waters also support classic relict fen species such Potamogeton coloratus. The site supports a wide range of other habitats such as mesotrophic grassland, scrub, bare earth and woodland.

 General Habitat Description

Land use

Land use% CoverLevel
nature conservation and researchMajor
extraction (minerals)Major
agriculture (arable)Major
urban/industrial/transportMinor
tourism/recreationMinor

Threatened Species

Species NameIPA Assess.Species Assess.AbundanceData qualityCriteria

Botanical Richness

EUNIS level 2 code & nameIPA Assess.Habitat Assess.% of indicator speciesNo. SpeciesNational BiotopeData qualityCriteria
C1 Surface standing waters200700unknownB

Threatened Habitats

IPA Habitat code & nameIPA Assess.Habitat Assess.AreaData qualityCriteria
3110 Oligotrophic waters containing very few minerals of sandy plains (Littorelletalia uniflorae)20070unknownCii

Protection

DesignationProtected Area NameRelationship with IPAOverlap with IPA
Site of Special Scientific InterestOrton Pitprotected area overlaps with IPA75
Site of Special Scientific InterestDogsthorpe Star Pit, Peterboroughprotected area overlaps with IPA36
Site of Special Scientific InterestBassenhally Pitprotected area overlaps with IPA9
Special Area of ConservationOrton Pitunknown0
Local Nature ReserveDogsthorpe Star Pitunknown0
Local Nature ReserveEye Greenunknown0
Local Nature ReserveLattersey Fieldunknown0
UnknownCrown Lakesunknown0
Site of Special Scientific InterestEye Gravel Pitprotected area overlaps with IPA1

Management

TypeDescriptionYear startedYear finishes
Protected Area Management Plan

Threats

ThreatImportance
abandonment/reduction of land managementhigh
development (industry)high
development (urbanisation)high
eutrophicationhigh
water (extraction/drainage/canalisation/managementhigh
development (infrastructure/transport)medium
consequences of invasive species (plant)low

 Conservation Issues Maintenance of open sites against successional fiorces Most of IPA under commercial ownership or agricultural Maintenance of early successional conditions in water bodies and margins Establishmanet and maintenance of within IPA connectivity

Contact Information

ContactContact Type
Tim PankhurstSite report compiler