Sea Lavender blooms on the beach at Holkham National Nature Reserve


Holkham National Nature Reserve

The Holkham National Nature Reserve extends over 4,000 hectares and includes land owned and managed by Holkham and also Crown Estates, which is managed by Natural England. Much of the land was reclaimed from saltmarsh between the 17th and 19th centuries. The 2nd Earl of Leicester planted the dunes with Corsican, Maritime, Scot and Austrian pines during the second half of the 19th century to stabilise the dunes so the recently reclaimed land could be used for agriculture. After the Second World War much of the land reverted to freshwater grazing which, together with the sand dunes, have become a haven for wildlife and in particular ground-nesting and over-wintering wildfowl and waders. The reserve was designated as a National Nature Reserve in 1967 and was managed until 2012 by Natural England. Holkham Estate then took the management of the reserve in-hand and appointed a Conservation Manager, two wardens and an Education Officer. The management of the reserve is overseen by an independent advisory board. There is an extensive network of paths and bird watching facilities for visitors and a dedicated and enthusiastic group of volunteers who help the wardens with practical and monitoring work.

The Conservation Manager’s responsibilities extend beyond the NNR to include liaison with the farm and game departments who work together to demonstrate how these different operations can benefit the natural environment.

Click here to read more about Holkham National Nature Reserve.