Throop Nature Park along the River Stour

Published 25th July 2022

The Project

On land previously known as Hicks Farm, Throop Nature Park will open up an exciting new area of approximately 12 hectares (30 acres) of BCP Council green space along the River Stour, offering people more opportunity to get outside and explore the great outdoors. The Nature Park will include a variety of circular walks, and semi-natural spaces to explore. There will be a new car park, gravel paths and grassy paths, benches and informative signs. The area will also provide space for dogs to exercise.

Planning approval was granted in 2021 (Application reference 7-2021-7824-C). A number of technical assessments have been completed to consider potential impacts upon ecology, trees, transport, heritage, flood risk and landscape, as well as opportunities for enhancement.

Construction is expected to start in late summer 2022, and it is expected that Throop Nature park will be open to the public in the late summer of 2023.

Throop Nature Park - aerial concept

The Nature Park has been designed to protect and enhance the existing wildlife habitats and species in the local area, whilst making improvements by planting thousands of new trees within new copses and by reinstating old hedgerows lost previously due to changes in agricultural practices. We will also be managing the majority of the floodplan meadow through conservation grazing and this will improve the wildflower diversity within that grassland.

Location & Accessibility

Throop Nature Park will be accessed from Throop Road and Watery Lane for pedestrians and cycles.

It will be served by a new, nearby car park off of Taylor Drive, including some disabled parking spaces. The gravel paths will be suitable for pushchairs, wheelchairs and mobility scooters. There will be benches and dog bins in the park. There will be cycle parking at both entrances.

Throop Nature Park will be a SANG

SANGs (Suitable Alternative Natural Greenspaces) are purposely designed to encourage people to use them for leisure purposes, rather than visiting the Dorset Heathlands which are of national and European nature conservation importance and designated as a Special Protection Area.

All new housing developments in Poole and Bournemouth make a financial contribution towards a package of mitigation measures, including the creation of natural green space. This has already led to the creation of 30 hectares of new natural green space at Upton Park Farm in Poole and over 14 hectares of new natural greenspace at Canford Park in Bearwood. The creation of natural green space accessible to the public at Throop Nature Park will complement this and help to meet the needs of future generations.

Further information

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The Parks Foundation

An independent charity devoted to enhancing the BCP area’s parks and green spaces for everyone to enjoy