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A popular nature reserve with a fascinating and storied history, Pennington Flash is great spot for an easy stroll.
The history of Pennington Flash dates back to the late 19th century, when the area was used for coal mining. The coal mines in the area were operated by a company called the Wigan Coal and Iron Company - they dug several deep pits to extract coal from the ground and the spoil from the mining operations was dumped in the area, creating a series of artificial hills and valleys. In the early 20th century, the mining operations at Pennington Flash ceased.
The area was abandoned and left to nature.
Over time, the abandoned pits filled with water and formed a series of ponds and lakes. In the 1960s, plans were made to turn the area into a nature reserve.
The local council purchased the land and began work on creating the reserve.
The hills and valleys created by the spoil from the mining operations were left intact, creating a unique landscape for the reserve. The reserve was officially opened in 1979 and has since become a popular destination for all lovers of nature.
The area is home to a wide variety of birds, including great crested grebes, tufted ducks, and coots and a number of rare plants and animals, including the water vole, which is considered a threatened species in the UK. This loop hike is a wonderful way of seeing Penington Flash, and whilst it does involve some short road sections, most of it is on wonderfully quiet trails.