Birmingham & Black Country Local Sites Assessment Report EcoRec. Ref. No.
EcoRec. Site Name
EcoRec. Grid Ref.
Perry Hall Bridge
Reason for Revision
Local Sites Schedule
Meets LS Criteria
i.e. None; New Site; Upgrade; Downgrade; Extension; Whole/Part Deletion
Description (see map 1) Citation (Summary of Value) The site supports a matrix of semi-natural habitats with large areas of grassland, scrub and tall herb vegetation. Reedswamp and open water are the most important habitats and the two interconnected pools hold significant populations of amphibians including Common Frog (Rana temporaria), Common Toad (Bufo bufo), Great Crested Newt (Triturus cristatus), and Smooth Newt (Triturus vulgaris). The site is one of the few places in B&BC where Palmate Newt (Triturus helveticus) occurs. There is some locally Uncommon flora such as Tormentil (Potentilla reptans), Field Scabious (Knautia arvensis) and Ivy-leaved Duckweed (Lemna trisulca). Some birds of conservation concern have been recorded. The site is well used by local people for informal recreation. Local Site Selection Criteria Ecological Habitat Diversity
The site supports a matrix of habitats and a high diversity of habitats are present. Variation in hydrology and soil conditions has created a range of grassland types.
A high diversity and abundance of amphibians are supported at the site and is one of the few places in B&BC where Palmate Newt (Triturus helveticus) occurs.Floral diversity is high due to the number of habitat types. A number of common bird and invertebrate species have also been recorded.
Neutral grassland has been reduced significantly across the B&BC. Species rich wetland areas are Uncommon and a valuable asset within the borough. Colonising Bracken, Tall Ruderal vegetation and scrub threatens the rarer habitats on site. Ponds supports an exemplary population of amphibians and is therefore rare in this sense.
A high number of Uncommon to Rare species have been recorded. The amphibian population is irreplaceable.
Size or Extent
In the context of Walsallâ€™s Local Sites, Perry Hall Bridge is a small site.
Position & Connectivity
The vegetation has developed a natural character although coal spoil is evidence of recent disturbance. Bracken and scrub are colonising the grassland and annuals colonising a disturbed area to the rear of a housing estate.
The site borders the Wyrley and Essington Canal. A corridor of semi-improved and improved grassland runs from the southern bank of the canal to Fibbersley (SINC) to the south.
Geological n/a Social M-H
The site appears to have coal spoil, indicative of historic industrial activities having occurred on site.
The site is publicly accessible and is used for dog walking and informal recreation. A strong desire line links Bentley Lane South with Kensington Road.
The matrix of semi natural habitats is an attractive feature in the residential area.
The recent survey will form the basis of future monitoring of the amphibian populations.
Value for Learning
Whilst the sites amphibian populations could form a useful resource for education, the lack of formal access currently limits the site's educational value.
Historical & Cultural
Site Description Perry Hall Bridge lies next to the Wyrley and Essington Canal in Willenhall, on the boundary of Walsall and Wolverhampton. The site is a matrix of habitats and there are large areas of grassland as well as scrub and tall herb vegetation. Reedswamp and open water are the most important habitats and the two interconnected pools hold significant populations of amphibians. Habitats ∗ Phase 1 Name
Phase 1 Code
Scrub - dense
BAP Priority Habitat
To the east of the marsh, scrub has colonised the sides of an old canal wharf, with frequent Hazel (Corylus avellana), Hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna), Goat Willow (Salix caprea), Elder (Sambucus nigra) and occasional Alder (Alnus glutinosa) and Holly (Ilex aquifolium). To the west a further area of tall herb and scrub has Hawthorn, Sycamore (Acer pseudoplatanus), Cherry (Prunus spp.), Bramble, Nettle, Cock’s-foot (Dactylis glomerata), Field Bindweed (Convolvulus arvensis) and Hogweed (Heracleum sphondylium). Acid Grassland
Less abundant are Sheep’s Sorrel (Rumex acetosella), Wavy-hair Grass (Deschampsia flexuosa) and Tormentil (Potentilla erecta) indicating that acidic soil conditions are present. Neutral Grassland
Grassland that surrounds the wetland has frequent Cock’s-foot, Yorkshire Fog (Holcus lanatus), Cat’s-ear (Hypochaeris radicata), Perennial Rye-grass (Lolium perenne), Common Knapweed (Centaurea nigra), Ribwort Plantain (Plantago lanceolata) and Lesser Trefoil (Trifolium dubium). Further grassland of common bent (Agrostis capillaris), False oat-grass, Common Knapweed, Common Sorrel (Rumex acetosa), Yorkshire Fog and Red fescue (Festuca rubra) extends in a rectangular patch to the north of the site. At the western edge of this grassland is a closely cropped strip where horses have reached in to graze from the adjacent field. The short sward contains numerous small rosettes of Mouse-ear Hawkweed (Hieracium pilosella) and some Field Scabious (Knautia arvensis), an uncommon plant in the borough. Marshy Grassland
Species rich marshy vegetation is concentrated in the central section of the site and within an old canal basin to the north-east. Reed Sweet-grass (Glyceria maxima) is the dominant species and there is frequent Common Reedmace (Typha latifolia), Marsh Thistle (Cirsium palustre), Cuckooflower (Cardamine pratensis), Gipsywort (Lycopus europaeus), Great Willowherb (Epilobium hirsutum), Hoary Willowherb (Epilobium parviflorum), Water Horsetail (Equisetum fluviatile), Curled Dock (Rumex crispus), Fool’s Water-cress (Apium nodiflorum), Water Dock (Rumex hydrolapathum), Common Marsh-bedstraw (Gallium palustre), Soft Rush (Juncus effusus) and Creeping Buttercup (Ranunculus repens). In the wetter areas Soft rush occurs. The regionally rare Broad-leaved Helleborine (Epipactis helleborine) occurs between the main area of marsh and the Wyrley and Essington Canal. Bracken
To the west of the grassland a Bracken (Pteridium aquilinum) dominated area also supports Horse-radish (Armoracia rusticana) and Evening-primrose (Oenothera agg.). Other tall herb & fern - tall ruderal
The tall herb vegetation ion this area includes Cow Parsley (Anthriscus sylvestris), Rosebay Willowherb (Chamerion angustifolium), Cleavers (Gallium aparine), Bramble (Rubus fruticosus agg.), Bittersweet (Solanum dulcamara), Ivy (Hedera helix) and Common Nettle (Urtica dioica). Swamp
Reedswamp and open water are the most important habitats. Limited ecological data is available. Standing Water
Reedswamp and open water are the most important habitats and the two interconnected pools hold significant populations of amphibians including Common Frog, Common Toad, Great Crested Newt and Smooth Newt. Notes
Species of Note  Flora Species Knautia arvensis Equisetum fluviatile Lemna trisulca
Field Scabious Water Horsetail Ivy-leaved Duckweed
U U U
Notes Fauna Species Apus apus Carduelis cannabina Delichon urbicum Gallinago gallinago Lissotriton helveticus Lissotriton vulgaris Passer domesticus Prunella modularis
Rana temporaria Sylvia communis
Triturus cristatus Notes
Common Name Swift Linnet House Martin Snipe Palmate Newt Smooth Newt House Sparrow Dunnock
Common Frog Whitethroat
Great Crested Newt
A R A A WCA S5 WCA S5 UKBAP
EHD Annex V, WCA S5 A EHD Annex II, IV, WCA S5
The site supports substantial amphibian numbers. Counts at the last survey were; Great Crested Newt (44), Triturus helveticus (74), Smooth Newt (150), Common Toad (86), Common Frog (40), the counts indicate a large Smooth Newt population and medium sized populations of the other species.
Invasive Species  Flora Species Notes
Fauna Species Notes
Geology Solid/Drift Formation
Pennine middle coal measures formation
Mudstone, siltstone and sandstone
Features of Value 1
Soils The site has slowly permeable seasonally wet slightly acid but base-rich loamy and clayey soils. Sheepâ€™s Sorrel and Wavy-hair Grass indicate that acidic soil conditions are present, possibly as a result of coal spoil. Comparison with Previous Survey(s) Results Public Access & Site usage Land Use
Nature conservation, informal recreation
Summary of Assessment In summary, the ponds and adjoining terrestrial habitat are of very high conservation value due to the high diversity and abundance of amphibians it supports. The site is well used by the local community and has some educational potential. When assessed against the Local Sites Selection Criteria, the site meets the criteria for a SINC. The sites main areas of interest may be threatened by pollution whether via overland flow or through the main water supply. Other habitats of interest include the grassland area. These are being colonised by tall Ruderal vegetation. If these trends prevail, then the areas of interest for which the site was selected as a SINC will instead reflect more ubiquitous habitats found in the borough. The management recommendations outlined below will help maintain and improve the ecological and social quality of the site. It is recommended that following the implementation of these the site is resurveyed and re-assessed against the Local Sites Selection Criteria in five years (2017). Further Survey & Outline Management Recommendations
Management should seek to maintain the amphibian interest on the site. Terrestrial vegetation, particularly the grassland that flanks the swamp, is likely to be important for amphibians. The amphibian population is irreplaceable. Care must be taken to ensure that: i) the pool remains pollution free and fish free as breeding habitat ii) the surrounding grassland remains intact for feeding, shelter and hibernation.
Water levels within the wetland and ponds should be maintained; this may necessitate the removal of silt and emergent vegetation in the future.
Management should seek to maintain the site’s existing vegetation cover.
Neighbouring residents should be made aware of the importance of the site and should be discouraged from discarding garden refuse within the boundaries.
The social and amenity value of the site could be improved with interpretation and improved access.
Document Information Habitat Data Source(s) (most recent first) Species Data Source(s) (most recent first)
EcoRecord data search 2012, 2007 SINC Evaluation, 09/05 Site survey.
EcoRecord data search 2012
Geology Data Source(s)
British Geological Society 1:625,000 bedrock & superficial deposits GIS layers from BGS website:
(most recent first)
Historic Information Sources(s)
Ordnance Survey mapping, 1880s County Series - current
James Mallin & Simon Atkinson, The Wildlife Trust for Birmingham & the Black Country
 HABITATS/SPECIES OF NOTE TABLES – ATTRIBUTE DEFINITIONS STATUTORY (PROTECTED) EHD = EU Habitats Directive (plus where relevant the Annexe II or IV). PBA = Protection of Badgers Act 1992. WCA S1 = Wildlife & Countryside Act Schedule 1 (birds protected at all times). WCA S5 = Wildlife & Countryside Act Schedule 5 (animals with various levels of protection). WCA S8 = Wildlife & Countryside Act Schedule 8 (higher and lower plants with various levels of protection). BAP – Habitats/Species included on current UK BAP list of Priority Habitats/Species. NERC P.I. - Habitats/Species included on current list of Principal Importance in England under Section 41 of the NERC Act (2006). RL - Species included on Global IUCN & British Red Lists (Red Data Books). RARITY (HABITATS) - BIRMINGHAM & BLACK COUNTRY - Habitats included on the B&BC list of locally rare habitats (administered by EcoRecord). RARITY (FLORA SPECIES) - BIRMINGHAM & BLACK COUNTRY - (based on data held and managed by EcoRecord). VR = Very Rare - a species present in less than 1.0% of 1Km squares, tetrads, or 5Km squares in B&BC. R = Rare - a species present in 1.0% - 4.3% of 1Km squares, tetrads, or 5Km squares in B&BC. U = Uncommon - a species present in 4.3% - 12% of 1Km squares, tetrads or 5Km squares in B&BC. CONCERN (FAUNA SPECIES OF CONSERVATION CONCERN) Birds: R = Red List - species that are Globally Threatened according to the International Union for Nature Conservation criteria; those whose population or range has declined rapidly in recent years; and those that have declined historically and not shown a substantial recent recovery. A = Amber List - species with an unfavourable conservation status in Europe; those whose population or range has declined moderately in recent years; those whose population has declined historically but made a substantial recent recovery; rare breeders; and those with internationally important or localised populations. Mammals: ND = National Decline and ED = England Decline as measured by the Mammal Societies Table of Recent Population Changes in the Native Species of Land Mammals. Invertebrates: RD = Regional Decline identified in Butterfly Conservation West Midlands Regional Action Plan. DATE - The most recent date the species has been recorded.
 Species listed on Schedule 9 part 1 (animals) and part 2 (plants) of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 as amended - this lists animals which may not be released or allowed to escape into the wild and plants which may not be planted or otherwise caused to grow in the wild.
Species Lists Scientific Name
Mugwort Confused Michaelmas-Daisy
Rubus fruticosus agg.
Stellaria media agg.
Great Crested Newt
Butterflies and Moths
Published on Mar 7, 2013