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RSPB – Dove Stone Nature Reserve – School Trips & Educational Outreach Programmes Greater Manchester

Location(s)Dove Stone, Bank Lane, Greenfield (closest postcode OL3 7NE) Grid ref SE013036
Key StagesEYFS, KS1, KS2, KS3, KS4, KS5
Special SchoolsYes
Public LiabilityOver 10,000,000
Enhanced DBSYes
FeesPlease contact us with details of your requirements
Administration Service Administered by the provider

More about this Workshop/Service and the Provider

Dove Stone

A dramatic landscape surrounded by hills. Enjoy a stunning 2.5 mile walk round Dove Stone reservoir with picnic area and woodland paths on the way. There are additional tracks around Yeoman Hey and Greenfield reservoirs, or a 1.5 mile route to Chew reservoir, a steep walk rewarded by fabulous views.

Schools booking information

Schools are welcome though there are no formal educational facilities onsite. If more information is needed prior to a visit, please contact us using the email enquiry form below.

Nature spectacles

Resident peregrine falcons can be seen all year round at Ashway Gap quarry, but are especially active in early spring and early summer when they are courting and then fledging young.

In the winter, mountain hares stand out in their white winter coats as they sunbathe on the rocks above the path leading up to Chew reservoir.

About Dove Stone


  • Open moorland above Dove Stone reservoir, with internationally important blanket bog undergoing restoration. Supports increasing numbers of breeding waders such as curlews, golden plovers and dunlins as well as mammals such as mountain hares and water voles.
  • Old quarry cliffs provide nesting sites for peregrine falcons and ravens.
  • Conifer plantations which are being converted to mixed woodland, along with newly planted woodland support a variety of birds and mammals.
  • Grassland, which through varied grazing and by planting wildflowers, supports a range of bees, butterflies and other insects.
  • Wildlife ponds supporting dragonflies and damselflies, as well as palmate newts, toads and frogs.


The internationally important blanket bog above Dove Stone reservoir took around 5000 years to develop, but over the last 200 years has suffered degradation from acid rain, burning and heavy grazing, which has left vast areas of bare, eroded peat and deep gullies.

Conservation work carried out in partnership with the landowners, United Utilities, aims to make the bog wetter again, blocking the gullies with stone and heather bales and revegetating the bare peat by planting sphagnum mosses with the help of local volunteers.

Healthy peat bogs lock in large amounts of carbon which is important in reducing the effects of climate change. They also improve drinking water quality by reducing the amount of peat being washed down into the reservoirs.

This work also benefits breeding waders such as curlews, golden plovers, red grouse and dunlins whose numbers are now increasing at Dove Stone in the restored areas.

While much of the conservation work is carried out on the higher moorlands, we are also working to make the moorland edges more diverse, with patches of trees, bilberry and heather, attractive to ring ouzels and other wildlife. Woodland management, planting wildflowers and creating wildlife ponds means that there is more wildlife to see around the main Dove Stone trail too.


RSPB Dove Stone are working to restore degraded upland peat bogs and other habitats alongside a number of partners, including United Utilities. Habitat restoration work has been delivered with the support of the Landfill Communities Fund, including Sita Trust, GrantScape and Wren.

School Outreach Visits

Free curriculum-based outdoor learning experiences in your school grounds.

Our trained educators will facilitate interactive, enquiry-based discovery of the natural world in your outdoor space. The programme runs in Belfast, Birmingham, Cardiff, Edinburgh and Manchester.

What's on offer?

We have a selection of fantastically engaging, age-appropriate, curriculum-linked sessions, all contributing towards RSPB’s Wild Challenge Award, Eco-Schools Programme and John Muir Awards. Our trained educators bring resources and specialist equipment, adding value to the workshops. 

Sessions for primary years:

  • Bioblitz (KS1/KS2/P2-P7)

Tell us your curriculum focus (eg plants, invertebrates, birds) and we’ll help your pupils to investigate their school grounds, enabling them to independently identify species adapted to their local environment.  This session supports understanding and enquiry of food chains, classification and biodiversity.

  • Habitat Explorer (KS1/KS2/EY-P7)

Working scientifically, your pupils will map and score your school grounds for nature – identifying habitats that already exist and using the data to effectively contribute to a biodiversity action plan.

  • Wild Words (KS1/KS2)

Exploring your school grounds using all their senses, your pupils will collect natural objects and expand their vocabulary around your chosen language focus, forming, articulating, communicating and organising ideas as a stimulus for creative and effective writing.

  • Biodiversity Action Plan (follow-on session in Scotland only – P5-P7)

Pupils use what they discovered from their survey to begin developing a plan for improving a local green space, either to increase biodiversity or support a particular species, or for creating a campaign to encourage their community to take action for nature.

Sessions for early years:

  • Minibeast Safari (inc. Scotland P1)

Using simple detective equipment your pupils will hunt for minibeasts, independently asking questions to find out where they might be hiding and embedding awe and wonder into everyday curiosity of the world around them.

  • Sensing the World (inc. Scotland P1)

Taking time to encourage child-led looking, listening, touching and smelling, your pupils will explore your school grounds, noting what they share their play with every day. They’ll discover a variety of colour and texture and share their preferences as they describe their smelly creations!

  • Wild Words (not Scotland)

Travelling around your outdoor space thinking about the journey of an animal, your pupils will collect natural discoveries and develop language and vocabulary that will become prompts for sequencing a story to retell the experience.


Availability & How to Book

We are ready to organise your special event for you and answer any queries you may have.

Please complete the enquiry form below and someone will get back to you.

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