The official opening of a new nature reserve at former gravel pits in Ben Rhydding attracted dozens of visitors.

The Lord Mayor of Bradford, Councillor Khadim Hussain joined local conservation and wildlife groups at Ben Rhydding Gravel Pits Nature Reserve, off Coutances Way, for the event, on Tuesday, which included a guided walk around the site.

More than 60 people turned up for the event. The site was recently officially declared a Local Nature Reserve (LNR) – only the third to be declared in the Bradford District – following consultation with Natural England.

The potential of the land was recognised almost half a century ago.

The site is managed by Wharfedale Naturalists Society in partnership with Bradford Council.

The partnership started in 2007 due to concerns over the site’s deterioration particularly due to invasive weeds. A management plan was agreed to maintain and enhance the sites biodiversity. Implementation has been though regular volunteer work parties.

  • We have been asked to point out that the photograph in last week’s edition showed the lagoon on neighbouring Ilkley Angling Association land, not the nature reserve itself.