Nature Reserves

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Kirtlington Quarry, Cherwell DistrictStreet Map

Kirtlington Quarry, Cherwell District
Managed by:Cherwell District Council
OS grid reference:SP 501 195
Nearest postcode:OX5 3HW
Usual work:Scrub clearance

This is a geological SSSI managed by Cherwell District Council. It was a working quarry until the 1920s, and many important fossils were found here, some of international significance. The site is now owned by Lafarge cement, but leased to Cherwell District Council.

Flora and Fauna

Wild flowers are abundant in Spring on the upper area, although the area is affected by scrub, such as hawthorn and dog rose. The base of the quarry is short grassland, grazed by rabbits. There is scrub at the base of most of the cliffs, but this is regularly cleared to expose the areas of geological interest.

Conservation Management

Management is aimed at protecting the site from antisocial behaviour, maintaining the paths and keeping the scrub under control so that wildflowers can flourish. Some management work has been done in the past by the Fire Brigade as part of training exercises, KWACS (the local conservation group) and geologists from Oxford University.


Take Mill Lane away from Kirtlington Village. After passing some houses on the left and then some buildings on the right, there is a layby on the left. This is the best place for access to the top of the quarry, if you continue 50 yards further there is a larger parking area and a gate which provides access for vehicles to the bottom of the quarry. However, the gate is normally locked and the track likely to get muddy, so the first layby and top path is probably best for OCV purposes.