Llanymynech

Llanymynech Rocks

Old quarries with great botanical treasures

Location

Underhill Lane off the A483
Oswestry
SY22 6HD
A static map of Llanymynech Rocks

Know before you go

Size
10 hectares

Entry fee

No

Grazing animals

Sheep are present for several months a year

Access

Turn into Underhill Lane off the A483 in Pant and park in the car park.  

Dogs

On a lead

When to visit

Opening times

Open at all times

Best time to visit

April to August

About the reserve

From the Welshpool direction, the dramatic cliff face of the quarry confronts you miles before you get to Llanymynech, rising suddenly from the low-lying, flat fields around the Morda and Vyrnwy rivers. The hills here mark the beginning of the Oswestry uplands, a limestone outcrop that continues up into north-east Wales.

Mining and quarrying on a small scale were carried out here for more than 2000 years, right up until the First World War. Reminders of this ancient industry can be seen in the old stone tramways and a winding house. The old quarries were designated a nature reserve in 1972 and much of it has regenerated as woodland; ash trees twined in wild clematis, or old man’s beard, as it is also known, on account of the smoky wreathes of seedheads that turn bushes and trees white here in autumn.

But the greatest botanical treasures are found in the short grassland and old spoil heaps directly beneath the cliff. Bee and pyramidal orchids grow here, along with the bright yellow rock rose and a whole herb garden of aromatic herbs – thyme, marjoram and wild basil. Wild clematis becomes a problem here; only the determined efforts of the Trust’s volunteers and a small flock of Hebridean sheep prevent it smothering the flower-rich swards.

New glades are being opened up and small-scale felling carried out to open up a corridor of light for butterflies. Pearl-bordered fritillaries, re-introduced on the Welsh side of the reserve have been seen on the Shropshire side. These butterflies need sunlight and violets, food plant of their caterpillars.

Contact us

Shropshire WIldlife Trust
Contact number: 01743 284280

Location map