Longburnford Quarry

Longburnford Quarry Nature Reserve

Longburnford Quarry

A small heathland and wet grassland site important for rare butterflies and reptiles


Longburnford Quarry Nature Reserve
A static map of Longburnford Quarry

Know before you go

1 hectare

Grazing animals


Walking trails


Terrain: No access
No access for the general public.

Access and Parking
Head west from the A68 3.5km south of Castleside following signs for Beehive Cottage. Turn sharp left at Oxen Law and head south for 600m. The reserve is on the left of the road where there is a small amount of parking on the roadside. No access is permitted on the reserve but the site can be viewed from the roadside.

Public Transport
Private transport to the site is recommended.


No dogs permitted

When to visit

Opening times

Open at all times

Best time to visit

May to June, July to September

About the reserve

Longburnford Quarry is one of Durham Wildlife Trust’s smallest nature reserves and was acquired primarily for the conservation of the small pearl-bordered fritillary butterfly, County Durham’s rarest butterfly.

The site itself is a very small, disused quarry intersected by a small stream with areas of heath, marsh, wet grassland and bracken. This wet grassland has plentiful marsh violets – the larval food plant of the small pearl-bordered fritillary.

Although the site is primarily managed for the conservation of the small pearl-bordered fritillary, it is also home to green hairstreak and dark green fritillary butterflies. Common lizard can also be seen.

Due to the small size and fragility of the habitat, and the threatened status of the small pearl, there is no access onto the site itself but the butterflies can be seen from the roadside verge where there is an interpretation panel giving further information.

Contact us

Durham Wildlife Trust
Contact number: 0191 584 3112
Contact email: mail@durhamwt.co.uk

Environmental designation

County Wildlife Site