Gipsy Lane Brick Quarry

    Wildlife Highlights

    The geology of this site provides a composition of mineral soils that are unique to Leicester and are rarely found in Leicestershire.  As such specialists have visited the site and found rare invertebrates largely confined to this habitat. A survey in 2018 revealed that this is the best site in Leicester for molluscs, thanks to its calcareous geology. More widely, the site supports Bee orchids, Common Centaury and other calcareous species.  The sites topography and low nutrients mean that grassland is generally sparse and allows for an open sward and greater diversity.  Within the former quarry rabbits are quite active and help to control the sward.  The site also supports gorse and broom which provide local nesting habitat.

    Small areas of marsh are present in the SuDs basin which supports ephemeral vegetation whilst recent works have created a number of permanent and semi-permanent ponds which support smooth newts.

    Wild places

    Total species seen at this site: 136


    The former brick quarry was designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) in 1981.  It is one of the smallest SSSIs in Leicestershire and is designated for its geological importance (Gypsum quarry made up of mudstones and dolomitic limestone with rich sulphide minerals).

    It has undergone major landscaping and changes resulting from a new road scheme that was constructed to the west and north of the site.  In 2016 the site had to undergo further levelling to help protect the exposed face of the Gypsum quarry which was subject to erosion from water being directed onto the face.

    The SSSI is protected from nearby development by a green boundary formed by a SuDs feature to provide storage for water. The site is also a Local Wildlife Site due to its botanical diversity and mosaic of habitats.

    Latest records

    Common Name Latin Name Date Recorded Recorded By
    WhitethroatSylvia communis29/04/2019DJ Robbins
    GreenfinchCarduelis chloris29/04/2019DJ Robbins
    Brown CentipedeLithobius forficatus27/04/2019David Nicholls
    Spotted MedickMedicago arabica26/04/2019Saharima Roenisch
    Opium PoppyPapaver somniferum26/04/2019Saharima Roenisch
    Horse-radishArmoracia rusticana26/04/2019Saharima Roenisch
    Wrinkled SnailCandidula intersecta26/04/2019Saharima Roenisch
    Wandering Pond SnailRadix balthica26/04/2019Saharima Roenisch
    White-lipped SnailCepaea hortensis26/04/2019Saharima Roenisch
    Bulbous ButtercupRanunculus bulbosus26/04/2019Saharima Roenisch
    Budapest SlugTandonia budapestensis26/04/2019Saharima Roenisch
    Square-spot RusticXestia xanthographa26/04/2019Saharima Roenisch
    Pill WoodlouseArmadillidium vulgare26/04/2019Saharima Roenisch
    SilverweedPotentilla anserina26/04/2019Saharima Roenisch
    Orange TipAnthocharis cardamines26/04/2019Saharima Roenisch
    Further Information

    The site is under the responsibility of Natural England. Further information on the SSSI status of this site can be found here.

    Getting There

    The site is managed by Leicester City Council and there is no open access onto the site. Arrangements to visit the site can be made via the council’s Nature Conservation team or see local press for details of formal Open Days when the site will be open to specialists and the public with restricted access twice per year.


    Managed By
    Leicester City Council

    Group Common name Latin name Last seen
    Trees, Shrubs & ClimbersField MapleAcer campestre26/04/2019
    Trees, Shrubs & ClimbersSycamoreAcer pseudoplatanus26/04/2019
    Slugs & SnailsSmooth Glass SnailAegopinella nitidula26/04/2019
    ButterfliesSmall TortoiseshellAglais urticae26/04/2019
    MothsElbow-stripe Grass-veneerAgriphila geniculea23/08/2018
    Spiders, Harvestmen & MitesBlack Lace-weaver SpiderAmaurobius ferox26/04/2019
    Bees, Wasps, AntsOak Marble Gall WaspAndricus kollari26/04/2019
    Bees, Wasps, AntsKnopper Oak Gall WaspAndricus quercuscalicis26/04/2019
    ButterfliesOrange TipAnthocharis cardamines26/04/2019
    WildflowersCow ParsleyAnthriscus sylvestris26/04/2019
    Bees, Wasps, AntsHoney BeeApis mellifera23/08/2018
    Slugs & SnailsArion ater agg.23/08/2018
    Slugs & SnailsGarden SlugArion hortensis23/08/2018
    Slugs & SnailsDusky SlugArion subfuscus23/08/2018
    Woodlice, CrustaceansPill WoodlouseArmadillidium vulgare26/04/2019
    WildflowersHorse-radishArmoracia rusticana26/04/2019
    Slugs & SnailsSilky SnailAshfordia granulata23/08/2018
    Bees, Wasps, AntsRed-tailed BumblebeeBombus lapidarius23/08/2018
    Bees, Wasps, AntsWhite-tailed Bumble BeeBombus lucorum agg.26/04/2019
    Bees, Wasps, AntsCommon Carder BumblebeeBombus pascuorum23/08/2018
    BeetlesBroom Seed BeetleBruchidius villosus26/04/2019
    WildflowersWhite BryonyBryonia dioica26/04/2019
    Trees, Shrubs & ClimbersButterfly-bushBuddleja davidii26/04/2019
    Grasses, Rushes & SedgesWood Small-reedCalamagrostis epigejos23/08/2018
    Slugs & SnailsWrinkled SnailCandidula intersecta26/04/2019
    WildflowersShepherd's-purseCapsella bursa-pastoris26/04/2019
    BirdsGoldfinchCarduelis carduelis23/08/2018
    BirdsGreenfinchCarduelis chloris29/04/2019
    WildflowersCommon KnapweedCentaurea nigra23/08/2018
    Slugs & SnailsWhite-lipped SnailCepaea hortensis26/04/2019