Lincolnshire Limewoods

Central Lincolnshire has one of the largest and most dense concentrations of ancient small-leaved lime woodland surviving anywhere in the British landscape.

Small-leaved lime (Tilia cordata) is a deciduous tree native to the UK and in this part of Lincolnshire is an indicator species for ancient, wildlife rich, woodland. 

The Bardney Limewoods National Nature Reserve is a collection of 13 woodland Sites of Special Scientific Interest. As an important natural resource these woods have been shaped by human management for over 5000 years. From early clearances by Neolithic hunter-gatherers, to coppicing in medieval times and modern forestry in the early twentieth century, the wooded landscape has changed considerably. However, many of these woods became isolated and fragmented as a result of agricultural intensification.

There is an exceptional concentration of wildlife in the ancient woodlands, and a number of species can be found here that otherwise only occur in Britain much further south or west. The farmland surrounding the woods retains ancient streams, hedges and ditches, supporting scarce species of wildlife. If you are cycling or walking along the roads that cross this area and look carefully you may observe this wildlife as you pass including butterflies, small mammals, birds of prey and reptiles. 

Like the woods the network of habitats was fragmented, providing limited opportunities for wildlife to expand their range and colonise new areas. A key aspect of the Living Landscape concept is to better connect isolated habitats, allowing wildlife to move more freely through the landscape.


What's happening

Lincolnshire Limewoods

The Lincolnshire Limewoods Project is a partnership that is protecting, enhancing and promoting the natural and historic landscape and features of the Lincolnshire Limewoods.

While only covering 2.3% of Lincolnshire, the project area contains just over a quarter of all Lincolnshire’s ancient semi-natural woodland.

The project partners have worked together to promote and enhance the existing landscape and make these areas more accessible for the communities and visitors of Lincolnshire, so that Britain’s greatest concentration of woods dominated by small-leaved lime is fully recognised. 

Lincolnshire Limewoods