News and Events

We love to hear about your experience and see your photographs through the seasons. Don't forget to follow us on Facebook and share our pages. We know we've done a great job when you've had a fantastic day out!

Wilding in the Park and BCA Woods

High Peak Borough Council, Buxton Field Club and BCA are working together to increase the biodiversity in the Serpentine Walks

It's world rewilding day today, 20th March, so we are celebrating some of the work being done in the town to help improve the biodiversity in the town.

BCA are working to increase the biodiversity in their woods and make them better for nature

Helping Buxtons’ Lapwings

With the breeding season almost upon us it is really important that we protect some of our vulnerable birds

Last week we received a message from a concerned member about the potential plight of Lapwings around Bishops Lane.

BCA member Karen King wrote

"Hi, I would like to bring to your attention an issue in the Civic Association owned fields off Bishops Lane. The issue concerning nesting lapwings and the use of these fields by dog walkers who leave the public footpath at the edge of the field or from the lane to exercise dogs off the lead. We have heard and watched the arrival of the lapwings come to nest every March for the last 30 years. Last year the remaining pair were disturbed and left. Meanwhile dog walkers continue on a daily basis to exercise their dogs in the field off the lead letting the dogs roam over the whole field near to where the Lapwings usually nest, risking disturbing the birds and their nests. As numbers of Lapwings are falling and they are "Near Threatened" I worry about what will happen this spring and hoped the Civic Association might be able to help with the issue.

More than happy to help and add further information if required. Looking forward to hearing from you."

Simon Fussell writes:

I can remember back in the early 70's the fields were full of Lapwings or Peewits as we called them. Now they are hanging on in isolated pockets their numbers threatened by a number of factors. 

So what can we do? How can we help Karen and the Bishop lane Lapwings?

Lindsey Wakefield, Chair of the Biodiversity Group  makes the following points. "So much Lapwing habitat has been lost through shifts in farming practice, and birds that still return to sites in March are often battling against these changes and fail in their breeding attempts. Lapwings are long-lived birds - they return to the same spots each year and watching them fail for controllable reasons is heartbreaking. The issue of free running dogs should be the easiest threat to address if there is awareness and understanding."

The Photographs below (taken by Karen King) show where some of the issues are.

So we can all do something to help the Lapwings

Adult Lapwing Photo by Rowan Wakefield

Keeping dogs under control and being aware that from March to the end of July there will be ground nesting birds such as Lapwings that need our help to halt the decline in numbers is a good way to start.

To help raise awareness and suggest how people can help BCA will be putting signs up to let people know that there are ground nesting birds in the area and we will be raising awareness through social media.

Thank you for your support

BCA Woods Migrant Bird Report

The status of migrant woodland specialists Redstart, Spotted Flycatcher & Pied Flycatcher in BCA and other woodlands in Buxton by Rowan Wakefield

Woodland specialist birds are species restricted to or highly dependent on particular
woodland habitats, and as a group have suffered significant declines, whereas woodland
generalists tend to have more stable or increasing populations. Data from the 2021
Woodland Bird Index, shows that populations of woodland specialists are 53% lower than
in 1970.

Appropriate management of woodlands is important for protecting diversity in birds.
Specialists have favoured niche habitats and often require particular woodland structure.
Under-management of woodlands can lead to loss of clearings, glades and rides and
changes in age structure, and is an important cause of decline, alongside woodland
fragmentation. Reductions of deadwood, wet features and invertebrate populations are
further causes of decline. In some situations predation can be a limiting factor. Climate
change can affect breeding times and productivity, and creates issues on migration. All
three species in this report may be affected by issues outside the UK in the birds’ wintering
grounds, but the focus here is local populations and management.

The three species chosen for the report, whilst not the only migrant woodland specialists in
Buxton and the surrounding area, represent Birds of Conservation Concern (BoCC) with
relatively low populations nationally.

Breeding Bird Surveys have been conducted since 2020 in BCA woods, covering all
species in certain years and migrants throughout the period. Where possible, territories of
the three focus species have been revisited to assess breeding success. In 2023, Burbage
Edge Plantation has been studied in addition to BCA woods. The report presents data from
the surveys, and explores ways to improve monitoring and habitats for these species.

To read the full paper click on the link below

The status of migrant woodland specialists Redstart, Spotted Flycatcher & Pied Flycatcher in BCA and other woodlands in Buxton

Don’t underestimate the blue tit

Lindsey Wakefield local naturalist and BCA trustee writes about the blue tit

As I write, I'm scanning the garden through binoculars, and surprised to find several Blue Tits not wearing the small metal leg bands fitted under the British Trust for Ornithology Ringing Scheme. You may wonder why this is surprising since the majority of Buxton's Blue Tits are metal free, but given we have ringed over 50 Blue Tits in our garden since my eldest son received his Ringing License in October, isn't it amazing that new ones still flood in?


The blue tit

Big Garden Bird Watch 2023

How to take part and why it is important.

Big Garden Birdwatch Buxton
27-29 January 2023

700,000 people took part in RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch 2022, counting over 11 million birds, and adding to four decades of data that give a unique insight into changes in our garden bird species.

Whilst this data is an invaluable record of national and regional trends, we hope to build a picture of Buxton's birds by gathering your local counts.

Enjoy watching and counting garden birds for just one hour this weekend and become part of the world's biggest wildlife survey.

Help us build a better picture of Buxton's birds by adding results to a simple online form: (see link below)

It's really important to also send your results to the RSPB by signing up via their website: (see link below)

How to take part

The count takes place during an hour of your choosing from 27 to 29 January 2022. Note down the maximum of each species seen at any one time in your garden during the hour.

Increase your chances of seeing birds by hanging feeders in your garden, and offering favoured food such as sunflower hearts, suet and peanuts.

Why take part?

Many birds have severely declined in recent years, including common species such as House Sparrow and Starling. By keeping local records of bird numbers over time, we can target action to help struggling species by creating better habitats and providing nest sites.

The Buxtonian

The Buxtonian is the house journal of Buxton Civic Association and will be published twice a year. The autumn/winter issue will focus on the natural environment of Buxton, while the spring/summer issue will concentrate on the built environment of Buxton.

We hope you enjoy the first issue.

To download a PDF of the Buxtonian click on the link below

Nature is under threat

Letter to Robert Largan MP from BCA Trustees

Dear BCA Members

I am sending you a copy of an urgent letter that I have sent to our MP Robert Largan on behalf of BCA Trustees.

With all that has happened as a result of the mini budget last week, you might not be aware that the UK Government announced a number of measures that, if implemented, will have an extremely detrimental impact on our ability to protect and enhance wildlife in England. The measures include:
The creation of large "Investment Zones" in which planning and conservation regulations will be largely pushed aside to favour development (Derbyshire County Council has been named as one of 38 local authorities around the country where an Investment Zone could be established).
Using the Retained EU Law Bill to abolish the Habitats Regulations 1994 - the strongest wildlife legislation in the UK that protects the very best wildlife sites and habitats and the most threatened species
Putting on hold of the Environmental Land Management Scheme (ELMS) and potentially replacing it with old style area-based payments which have been proved to be highly ineffective - the government had been working on this new agri-envorionment incentive scheme with farmers, landowners and conservation bodies for many months and it was being held up as a world leading scheme.

These proposals have prompted an unprecedented level of objection from almost all of the national charities involved in nature conservation including The National Trust, The Wildlife Trusts, RSPB, World Wide Fund for Nature, The Rivers Trust, Plantlife and The Woodland Trust, all of whom are urgently campaigning against these changes.

These proposed changes would make it much harder for BCA to object to or influence proposed developments that might threaten important wildlife sites or species in our area.

As a non-political organisation, we are not seeking to make any party political point here; rather we are standing up for the interests of the natural environment and its wildlife, which otherwise do not have a voice in these matters.

You may already have written to Robert Largan about this issue, but if you have not, Trustees would encourage you to consider doing so.
Please feel free to draw on our letter if that would be helpful.

You might like to see the press release from the CEO of the National Trust - see link below

Further detailed information can be obtained from the RSPB and WILDLIFE TRUSTS - see link below

Yours sincerely


BCA Letter to Robert Largan

Biodiversity Action Padlet

An interest in biodiversity is shared by a number of BCA Groups and wider Buxton groups, and there is significant crossover between groups for those who undertake active conservation work and nature-based educational activities.

Padlet is a shareable interactive wall of categorised posts with images, videos, and links to resources.

A Biodiversity Padlet for Buxton will allow us to promote various activities with calendar and contact details, easily accessed by anyone who has the link, and easy to share through newsletters and website as an ongoing reminder of volunteering opportunities.

The focus will be practical activities such as BCA Woodland Volunteers or Butterfly Surveys and will include activities with young people through Wild Weeks and other projects.