Bury Wildlife

Radcliffe (Outwod, Close Park, ansd River Irwell)

Outwood Colliery was a coal mine opened in the 1840s and was the largest colliery in the area. A railway sidings from the nearby East Lancashire Railway Line was located nearby, from the northern end of the colliery. In its heyday the colliery employed over 2000 workers. Due to an underground fire the colliery was closed in 1931. The colliery, which covers half a sq mi, was transferred to Bury Council in October 1997. The site consisting mostly of contaminated land covered with collapsed buildings, spoil heaps, and uncapped mineshafts. It  has been turned into open land as part of the Outwood Forest Park project and is part of the Irwell Sculpture Trail. This is an extensive site of mainly woodland with open areas and some standing water. Running through the area  is the River Irwell and the old railway since turned into a cycle track which runs over the Radcliffe viaduct.


Close Park is a public park at the centre of Radcliffe. It is bordered by the former East Lancs Paper Mill and the River Irewell. Other areas include the Bury Bolton Canal as it makes it way to Bolton and the area near Bradley Fold. All of these offer RadcliffeWildlife areas to flourish.


Radcliffe despite this extensive industriail past has lots to offer in Wildlife. Roe Deer are often seen. Birds include Dipper, Goosander, Kingfisher, and Sand Martin in the centre of Radcliffe.  Fauna includes some rareities like Water Violet, Southern Marsh Orchid, Eyebright, Flag Iris, and Marsh Cinquefoil. Radcliffe is also a stronghold of the Great Crested Newt and more common amphibians. The old lodges also contain Water Scorpion, Water Spider, Water Measurer, and WateR Cricket.


Radcliffe  also offers much in the way of history with a Roman Road going through the site of the medievil village between Rinchester and Manmchester. Nearby stands the scheduled ancient monument of Radcliffe Tower and the Medievil Church. Recentky the medievil market cross weas rediscovered in a store in Radcliffe Libary. Finally Radcliffe Ings on theRiover Irwell  was an important pre Roman Site.