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Special Areas of Conservation

Manchester Mosses

Designated Special Area of Conservation (SAC)
Country England
Unitary Authority Cheshire, Greater Manchester
Centroid* SJ691973
Latitude 53.47111111
Longitude -2.465555556
SAC EU Code UK0030200
Status Designated Special Area of Conservation (SAC)
Area (ha) 170.49
* This is the approximate central point of the SAC. In the case of large, linear or composite sites, this may not represent the location where a feature occurs within the SAC.
Location of Manchester Mosses SAC

General site character

  • Bogs, Marshes, Water fringed vegetation, Fens (89%)
  • Broad-leaved deciduous woodland (11%)

Download the Natura 2000 standard data form for this site as submitted to Europe (PDF <100kb)

Note When undertaking an appropriate assessment of impacts at a site, all features of European importance (both primary and non-primary) need to be considered.

Annex I habitats that are a primary reason for selection of this site

  • Mossland formerly covered a very large part of low-lying Greater Manchester, Merseyside and southern Lancashire, and provided a severe obstacle to industrial and agricultural expansion. While most has been converted to agriculture or lost to development, several examples have survived as degraded raised bog, such as Risley Moss, Astley & Bedford Mosses and Holcroft Moss on the Mersey floodplain. Their surfaces are now elevated above surrounding land due to shrinkage of the surrounding tilled land, and all except Holcroft Moss have been cut for peat at some time in the past. While past drainage has produced dominant purple moor grass Molinia caerulea, bracken Pteridium aquilinum and birch Betula spp. scrub or woodland, wetter pockets have enabled the peat-forming species to survive. Recent rehabilitation management on all three sites has caused these to spread.

Annex I habitats present as a qualifying feature, but not a primary reason for selection of this site

  • Not Applicable

Annex II species that are a primary reason for selection of this site

  • Not Applicable

Annex II species present as a qualifying feature, but not a primary reason for site selection

  • Not Applicable

Many designated sites are on private land: the listing of a site in these pages does not imply any right of public access.