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Case Study Ringwood Quarry, Ibsley Water, Hampshire

Restoration Sections

Ibsley Water is located on the edge of the New Forest in the River Avon Valley.  The extensive lake has, & is being, created by gravel extraction on the site of a former WWII air base. We developed a scheme to restore this quarry, covering over 50% of the total proposed lake area, to a wetland habitat & reservoir. The project later received a restoration award.


The perimeters of the lake have been designed to create shallow margins & maximise the potential for emergent & shallow water habitats to encourages water birds and wildfowl. This has been very succesful & is popular with birdwatchers. A number of bird hides & facilities have been created since restoration & the site is now designated as a site of international importance for waterfowl (RAMSAR).


The lake provides drinking water for Southampton during the summer months. Therefore, the margins have also been designed at a variety of heights to create shallows & margins that will maintain & create new  habitats when the water is  'drawn down' over the summer & as the water table rises over the winter/spring period.


Islands & promentories were also designed to maximise important lake edge bio-diversity and create additional habitats for breeding birds and other wildlife. The design carefully utilises on site materials as planning permission does not allow for importing soils or inert waste.




to Award Video ibsley water landscape design sections to restoration award

Landscape restoration projects involve the repairing and enhancement of environments disturbed by industrial activities such as landfill sites, industrial waste or quarrying activities. The requirement for restoration back to an acceptable condition is usually stipulated at the outset before planning approval is gained. Often restoration projects such as quarrying may take decades to complete and the planning legislation, economic and environmental needs change over time. Therefore ongoing planning and re-designs also ensures the impacts of the development are minimised during the life of the scheme.


Typical examples of our projects have included a restoration of a landfill site in Oxfordshire to a country park and wildlife lake, the placement of PFA (waste fuel ash) from a coal power station near Newport, Gwent to create wildlife lagoons and numerous quarry environmental management and restoration projects across the UK.     

Landscape Restoration

Tern hide with morning mist Ibsley Water sand and gravel quarry just prior to restoration Initial earthworks priorr to the final grading The restored lake edges when the pumps have been turned off and lake rises to its final level. The lake edge cultivation, prior to seeding with wildflowers Bow shaped nesting islands - the windward side is deep water, the lee side is extensive shallows for feeding areas and maginal and aquatic habitats. A chain of breeding islands with shallows. Formed from a former quarry retaining structure. The wildlife trust clearing the islands of vegetation to form ideal habitiats for nesting waders.