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Post glacial Pennine landscape of Upper Teesdale (M Rogers)

Our Special Place

Upper Teesdale is a special place.  Vast upland fells, bleak in places, give way to rough pastures and the meadows on the banks of the River Tees.  In Spring, if you are lucky, you will discover the unmistakable Spring Gentian. The small, vivid blue flowers are a famous symbol of this magnificent landscape and its extraordinary array of plant species.  Geology, glaciation and climate have created a unique habitat that makes Upper Teesdale world-renowned as a botanical hotspot.

Weather signpost with lichens in Upper Teesdale

Flowing through County Durham in the North of England, the River Tees' upper reaches are unique.

Post glacial landscape in Upper Teesdale, drumlins

The melting ice sheet 12,000 years ago left an open landscape rapidly colonised by some of the  light-loving plants still growing in Upper Teesdale today.

Wild flower verge Teesdale, County Durham

Geology, glaciation,  climate and land use have created a unique habitat that makes Upper Teesdale home to a diverse range of rare plants.

Moor House - Upper Teesdale National Nature Reserve landscape with grazing sheep

Upper Teesdale's habitats are impacted by the unique land ownership and management.

Sugar limestone in Upper Teesdale

The geology of Upper Teesdale has formed and shaped the landscape, river and habitats that we know today.

Moor House - Upper Teesdale National Nature Reserve wide landscape and moody skies

At the top of Teesdale, the growing season is short with average temperatures in May similar to the average temperature in London in January.

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