Queens Award for Voluntary Service

Lower Sowerholme

Lower Sowerholme is 2.8ha/7acre field on the left of the path as one walks towards Flora Field and Pony Wood having crossed Lucy Brook.


  • This area was originally part of Aldcliffe Hall estate and grazed by a tenant farmer. Earlier maps show a bridge over the brook, where it is now culverted; cattle would have been driven over here from what is now Abraham Heights.

Since 2011

  • When the Fairfield Association was negotiating to buy the land to the south of the brook, the field belonged to a developer, who intended to extend the housing. Acquisition of this field was crucial to extending the area of the nature reserve.

Current Features

  • Lucy Brook runs along the border with Big Meadow. Part way along is a cattle crossing, so the cattle can move freely between the two. The brook runs through a narrow steep-sided channel which, as it approaches the footpath goes into a culvert, emerging where the footpath crosses.
  • At the top of the field is Willow Pond and a wet, rushy area bordering Lucy Brook where we can find snipe. With the trees behind this is a rich area for birds.


  • In the summer the thistles are scythed.
  • White Park cattle keep the grass low.


  • We would like to put the bends back in the brook, allowing it to follow it’s natural course. This would make the brook a better habitat for wildlife and an attractive

Look out for

White Park cattle grazing near the gate by the Lucy Brook crossing. Fox, roe deer and hare especially by the far hedge or the top of the field.

Photographic Survey

We maintain a record of how the various areas of Nature Reserve are progressing. Photographs have been taken on roughly 5 occasions each year: March, mid-May, late June, early August and late September. Click on an image to launch the survey photograph album.

Photographs launch in an album in Google Photos and should appear in date order in the album. To find out the date particular photos were taken, first select the photo and then select the ‘i’ icon (top-right of screen) to bring up its properties.

View10-Lower Sowerholme towards West Field Album
View 10-Lower Sowerholme towards West Field
View11-Lower Sowerholme towards Aldcliffe Rd Album
View 11-Lower Sowerholme towards Aldcliffe Rd
View13-Lower Sowerholme Album
View 13: Willow Pond in Lower Sowerholme
View27-Lower Sowerholme from gate towards Aldcliffe Rd-19 June 2022
View 27-Lower Sowerholme from gate towards Aldcliffe Rd