Cotswold Water Park SSSI

Closed 7 Jun 2021

Opened 7 Jan 2021


The Cotswold Water Park is a 40 square mile complex of 177 lakes formed by gravel workings on the borders of Gloucestershire, Wiltshire and Oxfordshire. There are two principal blocks of lakes: a larger one in the west centred on Ashton Keynes and a smaller eastern one centred on Fairford, with stepping-stones formed by recent workings in between.

The Cotswold Water Park SSSI was notified in June 1994, comprising 10 lakes of special interest for standing water habitats and the associated charophytes (stoneworts). The Cotswold Water Park is of special interest for its nationally important numbers and assemblages of breeding and non-breeding waterbirds and populations of aquatic plants which occur within and are supported by the wider habitat mosaic.

The Cotswold Water Park is notified as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) 7 January 2021.

We recommend you read more about the changes to the Cotswold Water Park SSSI which are described (with maps) in the notification document in the related documents section.

You can submit your views via an online survey or by email to .

Why we are consulting

We are now seeking views on changes to the notification of the Cotswold Water Park SSSI under the following Sections of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981:

  • notification of additional land under Section 28C
  • proposed de-notification of part of the Cotswold Water Park SSSI under Section 28D


What happens next

We are now assessing the response to the consultation and will be making a recommendation to the Board of Natural England in due course. Natural England has to make a decision to either confirm or withdraw this notification by 6 October 2021 or the notification will cease to exist. We will widely promote Natural England's decision.


  • Charities/Voluntary Organisations
  • Government Agencies
  • Local Authorities
  • Walkers
  • Farmers
  • Tenant Farmers
  • Agricultural Landlords
  • Land Agents
  • Public Bodies
  • Consultants


  • Natural environment
  • Biodiversity
  • Conservation
  • Land management
  • Environmental Stewardship
  • Uplands
  • Protecting wildlife