Your refuge from the bustle of daily life © 2012 Friends of Holywell Dene. All Rights Reserved

History of the Dene

The first reference to Holywell Dene was in 800AD although it was then known as Merkel Dene. It was part of the Manor of Hartley.

In 1219 the Manor of Hartley was conferred to Gilbert de Laval and became part of the Delaval Estate, as it is today.


About Us

In 2000 Holywell Dene was in a bad state and deteriorating rapidly. The tenant farmer’s right to over-winter cattle in the Dene had heavily affected the ground flora and natural regeneration, as well as severely damaging the numerous paths.

Welcome to Holywell Dene!


Holywell Dene is in the South East corner of Northumberland, with a small part straddling the border into North Tyneside.


The Dene stretches for approximately 6km between the villages of Seghill in the west, passing close to Holywell and Old Hartley, and thence to Seaton Sluice on the coast in the east.


Holywell Dene is a steep sided ancient semi-natural woodland and is traversed by a small river known as the Seaton Burn. Between Old Hartley and Seaton Sluice, where the river enters the sea, the valley widens into a tidal flood plain.


Much of the Dene is part of the Delaval Estate. In 2000 the Estate granted the two Councils a 99-year lease; they in turn designated their areas Local Nature Reserves.

 

In the same year, 2000, a voluntary community group called Friends of Holywell Dene was established.

Flora and Fauna

The woodlands of Holywell Dene, together with its adjacent agricultural fields, support a wide variety of Flora and Fauna.

Wild flowers found, which are indicators of native woodland, include:                                


Bluebells in the Dene

Latest News

1-Nov-21

The Fauna page of the Flora and Fauna section has been updated with a report for October.

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Upcoming Events

Dates for your diaries - a list of events occurring throughout the year can be found here.

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2-Nov-21

A sunny day greeted the eleven volunteers who turned up at Hartley Lane carpark this morning to work on fence repair and pond maintenance….

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26-Oct-21

Eleven volunteers turned out in the drizzle for a morning of river clearance today. The meeting point was the metal gate on the Hartley West Farm road….

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16-Nov-21

Path repair was the order of the day for the 10-person working party this morning, with grey skies above and mud underfoot….

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9-Nov-21

The working party of eleven volunteers was greeted by the sight of a new tools vehicle this morning….

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2-Dec-21

There was a special working-party session today, Thursday, between 9:00 and 13:00. Nine of us turned out at Holwell pumping station on a bright and frosty morning….

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30-Nov-21

Mayhem greeted the ten volunteers of the working party this morning – fallen trees everywhere, thanks to Storm Arwen! This defined today’s work: clearing the blocked paths….

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23-Nov-21

A bright wintery sun greeted the eleven volunteers who turned out at Hartley Lane carpark this morning for another session of footpath repair….

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