Axe Estuary Wetland Project

View of Axe Estuary wetlands

The Axe Estuary Wetlands is an overarching term for the nature reserves managed by East Devon District Council on the lower Axe. The District Council has a long term ambition to create a single nature reserve stretching from Seaton to Colyford, which will bring environmental, social and economic benefits to the area.  

Currently the District Council owns three reserves on the Axe, Seaton Marshes, Colyford Common and Black Hole Marsh. These reserves are a rich mosaic of saltmarsh and freshwater grazing marsh, ponds, reedbed, ditches and saline lagoon.

There are great opportunities for wildlife watching at the Seaton Marshes and Colyford Common hides, as well as from the recently extended Borrow Pit pond dipping platform, all set against the beautiful backdrop of the lower Axe valley. Thanks to a grant from the 'Making it Local ' programme, a classroom and Information Centre (with ajoining hide with disabled access) and car park were completed in 2011 to allow people to get up really close to nature and to provide facilities for visitors and school groups. The Information Centre is staffed by volunteers - PDF file click here for summer opening times (117KB Portable Document Format - 14 May 2014 - PDF Help). Plans are in progress to extend the car park and a toilet block has been built - the mains water should be connected very soon.  Facilities and access at the site are being improved all the time, so keep checking the website for the latest developments.

A busy programme of events and education already runs on the Axe Estuary Wetlands and this is intended to expand as time goes on.

The vision plans for a wealth of new wildlife habitats, making the area one of the best sites for wildlife watching in Devon.  A network of paths will provide public access to all of the different habitats. Up to three and a half miles of routes will be available to explore, and these will be screened wherever necessary to avoid disturbance to the wildlife. All routes will be created to a standard suitable for wheelchairs and will include sections of boardwalks and bridges to allow safe access over marshy or tidal areas.

Page last updated on 14 May 2014