Priors Hall Park’s residents have a new way to stay healthy and appreciate the wildlife on their doorstep as ‘The Gulley’, its 25 acre nature reserve and county wildlife site has been completed and is now open to walk through. The Corby Old Quarry ‘Gullet’ runs through the centre of Priors Hall Park, directly between our nearly complete Zone 1, and the soon to be launched second zone of the development.
Awarded Wildlife Site status in recognition of its biodiversity value and quantity of rare habitat types, the pathway passes through almost 2km of wet grassland, reed beds and hawthorn scrub before reaching the 8-acre lake in the Southern Gulley. The area’s past use as an ironstone and limestone quarry is clearly visible with the steep cliff face and formation of pools throughout the reserve.
The gulley is home to Great Crested Newts which have been translocated to the area under licence issued by Natural England. In addition to the green barriers that enclose the Great Crested Newt receptor areas, deer fencing has also been installed. The fence excludes Fallow Deer and Muntjac from the Wildlife Site in order to allow for the scrub areas, which provide cover for Great Crested Newts and other species, to recover. It will take a few years for the optimum habitat to establish sufficiently, at which point the deer fencing will be removed.
The surrounding flora and fauna attracts many species of wildlife that you won't commonly find on a Corby doorstep; with more than 75 species of birds and 17 species of butterfly.