Back of Beyond is set in 30 acres of parkland, of which 18 acres are woodland. By conservation and stewardship we’re improving this area to encourage the abundance of natural wildlife, fauna and flora that is already thriving within our park.
Conservation and the environment are very important to us at Back of Beyond. In recognition of our focus on protecting the natural habitat, we have received the David Bellamy Gold Conservation award for several years running. In March 2020 we also received a special award from Rufus Bellamy.
In the woodlands, we’ve created open areas to encourage insects, bees, bird life and wild flowers. The paths are made from our own woodchip and we’re continuing to extend them so that you can enjoy our woodlands and walk your dog there.
The 2 large, attractive lakes border our stretch of the Moors River. The area around the lakes is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) because there are several unusual and very rare species here. This is a dog-free zone.
Our lakes provide a habitat for wildlife and are rich in dragonflies, birds, fish and, of course, natural predators like heron and otters. You’re welcome to fish in our lakes if you want to try your luck, but these are wildlife lakes rather than professional fishing lakes.
Bees and honey
A local bee expert keeps a number of beehives on site. If you’d like to taste the honey that the Back of Beyond bees make, it’s on sale in the shop at Reception.
In 2021 we planted extensive areas of wildflowers for the bees and other pollinators – read about the new wildflower meadows.
We try to do as much as we can to protect our precious and enviable environment. On receiving our David Bellamy Gold award, we were highly praised for our management of the wildlife, woodlands and lakes, as well as for our use of bird and bat boxes and bird feeding stations. You may notice these small animal rest stops as you walk around the park.
Here are some of the other ways in which we’re protecting our environment:
- Our water supply on the park is provided by our very own bore hole.
- Lights and ventilation fans in the shower/toilet blocks are on motion sensors.
- We encourage as much recycling as possible and you will find appropriate points at our waste store areas.
- We do not have mains waste instead we have our own waste system on site which uses only eco chemicals and encourages friendly bacteria to break down the waste.
- We create our own compost from all our grass cuttings and leaf mulch. To encourage an abundance of butterflies, moths and dragonflies, we allow certain areas of the park to remain natural.
We count ourselves lucky to share the park with such a wide variety of birds, badgers, red deer, rabbits, squirrels, otters, toads and swans, to name but a few species.
We love receiving photos of the wildlife that you see – see guests’ photos in our Visitor Photo Gallery. Please send us any wildlife photos you have taken at Back of Beyond, stating when you saw it. Send photos to: firstname.lastname@example.org
What to look and listen out for
- Many species of birds, including Woodpeckers and Kingfishers by the water
- Wild flowers along the pitch and putt course and around the lakes
- Many species of trees throughout the park, including Scots Pine, Oak, Alder, Silver Birch, Holly, Cedar, Ash, Elm, Sycamore, Beech, Walnut, Rowan, Yew, Goat Willow and Eucalyptus
- Squirrels and rabbits plus other species which tend to be very shy such as otters deer, toads, grass snakes and sand lizards
- Around eight types of dragonfly, including the Four-Spotted Chaser, Broad-Bodied Chaser, Emperor Dragonfly, Emerald Damselfly, Azure Damselfly and Blue-Tailed Damselfly
- Many species of moths and butterflies, including the Comma, Red Admiral, Painted Lady, Gatekeeper and various Blues, Whites, Skippers, Coppers and Fritillaries to name a few!