Weardale is within the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and is one of England`s most special places - a peaceful, unspoilt landscape with a rich history and vibrant natural beauty. It has a distinctive landscape of high moorland with dramatic views, snaking stone walls, stone built villages, and an extensive imprint of a past industrial mineral mining age. Peace, tranquillity and fabulous night skies ensure its recognition by CPRE as one of England`s most tranquil places.
The moorlands and peatscapes are home to some of our rarest wildlife and have a sense of naturalness and remoteness found in few other places in the country. Weardale is home to some of the finest upland hay meadows in the UK with the very best meadows containing over 30 species of flowering plants and grasses, with up to 120 species per field.
Harehope Quarry is a former limestone quarry in Weardale, Co. Durham. The quarry is a Local Wildlife Site with areas of wet woodland, species-rich limestone grassland and ponds and rivers. The site is renowned for its exposures of Frosterley Marble as well as characteristic features of limestone geology, including Jacob’s Pot.
The quarry is managed to promote biodiversity, provide some permissive access and encourage outdoor learning through educational visits, courses and events. Facilities at Harehope Quarry include:
- Purpose-built outdoor classroom
- Dedicated bushcraft/Forest School site
- Outdoor cooking facilities
- Outdoor play and delivery area
Phone: 07807 002032
For more information about special events
Low Barns Nature Reserve
One of the county's most important wildlife sites this 50- hectare wetland site located adjacent to the River Wear also contains mixed woodlands and species rich grasslands with a Visitor Centre
and Coffee shop.