Local Sites

Local Sites (LS) is the rather general-sounding title that Defra has recently recommended for sites that have been recognized at the local level (usually county) for their substantive wildlife or geological value.

In Bedfordshire and Luton a system of such wildlife sites has been long established, and here they retain the existing title of County Wildlife Sites (CWS). The CWS system is adminstered by the CWS Panel.

As geological sites have been recognized more recently, they have adopted the recommended title of Local Geological Sites (LGS). The LGS system is adminstered by the LGS Panel.

A tier of wildlife site below that of CWS has recently been established, called District Wildlife Sites (DWS). The DWS system is adminstered by the DWS Panel.

Local Sites Partnership

Fenlake Meadows

The CWS Panel, DWS Panel and LGS Panel are all overseen by the LS Partnership.

The LS Partnership maintains an overview of the LS system, meeting twice a year to network, share information, plan and monitor LS activities. All members share ownership of the LS system, and have a responsibility to contribute to and play an active role in helping to administer the LS system to help meet objectives. Membership of the LS Partnership remains open to anyone who can contribute positively towards the LS objectives.

The current membership of the LS Partnership comprises:

  • Bedford Borough Council
  • Bedfordshire and Luton Biodiversity Recording and Monitoring Centre
  • Bedfordshire Geology Group
  • Bedfordshire Rural Communities Charity
  • Central Bedfordshire Council
  • Forestry Commission
  • Natural England
  • Luton Borough Council
  • The Environment Agency
  • The Greensand Trust
  • The Wildlife Trust

The role of the LS partnership is documented HERE (.pdf).

LS partnership policies for contacting landowners for access to their land for monitoring and surveying can be found HERE (.pdf).