Mayors visit the Manchester Mosses

Their job is to sell Manchester to the world and they now have an added an environmentally-friendly attraction to their portfolio.

The region’s top decision-makers have been visiting the Manchester Mosses SAC over the past month to see the amazing work being carried out by partners in the Great Manchester Wetlands Partnership.

Today, Interim Mayor of Greater Manchester Tony Lloyd, Mayor of Salford Paul Dennett and Peel’s Chair of Land and Property Louise Morrissey were introduced to the wilderness of Little Woolden Moss, close to Cadishead.

As the group were being guided by the Lancashire Wildlife Trust, a peregrine falcon swooped over a pool and gave an aerial display.

Peatland birder Dave Steel said: “We didn’t plan this but every time you visit this Moss you will see something special.”

LWT Chief Executive Anne Selby and Head of Operations Mick Weston described how the wetlands area stretching from the flashes at Wigan, through the Manchester Mosses and into Woolston Eyes nature reserve, close to Warrington, have been restored from devastation during the Industrial Revolution to wonderful habitats for wildlife.

These are internationally important areas for wildlife and for carbon storage and capture, which boosts the battle against global warming.

Ms Selby said: “We are restoring these areas after decades of coal and peat extraction. We are also opening them up to many of the millions of people who live around the wetlands.”

Natural England’s Amanda Wright added: “We want this to be an area for people to visit, walking and cycling. A place where they felt they were not allowed to visit in the past.”

Mr Lloyd, Mr Dennett, Ms Morrissey and Ms Selby planted pots of various types of sphagnum moss, a vital peatland plant, and promised to return to see how it spreads in the future.