Martock Neighbourhood Plan



Cartgate pond
The pond in Cartgate Nature Area, now choked with reed mace. Little open water.

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Cartgate Nature Area

Cartgate Nature Area is a spin-off from the Neighbourhood Plan. It is an unregistered green space shown in the map below created when the A303 was made into a dual cariageway some 30 years ago. It consists mainly of the old railway embankment and a pond and meadow area just north of the line.

The line embankment was reconstructed to give it sufficient strength to act as a flood protection area for Martock controlled by a sluice gate in a channel running under it. This is normally locked open but can be closed when flood risk is high storing water in the field to the north.

The whole area also acts as an emergency pollution protection containment pond in the event of a pollution accident on the nearby A303.

Map of Cartgate Nature area

Map of Cartgate Nature Area shown outlined in blue








(map created with Parish Online)

The area has not been effectively managed for any of its functions in recent years. Discussions with Highways England–who manage the A303–and the Parish has led to an agreement under which the major tasks to maintain the flood protection function will be the responsibility of Highways England while the day-to-day management of the area as a nature reserve will be unndertaken by Parish volunteers  

The area in the past has been a habitat for soem less common birds such as kingfisher, nightingale, reed bunting, cettis warbler various water birds and, in particular a wide range of invertebrates, particularly dragonflies, damselflies and crickets.

It has recently become degraded by excessive growth of bramble, blackthorn and reeds and the intention is to try and restore it to its earlier more diverse state.

A list of species recorded at Cartgate in recent years (Deon Warner) can be downloaded here.



Embankment The old railway embankment now reinforced as a flood protection dam. This had become overgrown with bramble which has recently been cleared. To volunteer
Email Andrew Clegg at Helpers are always needed
Reeds The edge of the pond choked with reed mace. Clearing it has begun. The area to the right will be restored as unimproved meadowland with a rich variety of flowers.  
Woodland The south east corner was planted with a variety of trees to provide a small woodland habitat that includes a number rich in winter nuts and fruit. These are now maturing.