Bost Hill and Vale Drive,
The Gallops open space is a West Sussex Area of Nature Conservation Importance on the west side of Findon Valley and within The South Downs National Park.
This open space features a range of habitats including unimproved chalk grassland, semi-natural woodland and scrub.
Management here is directed at removing invasive non-native species like Russian Vine, maintaining unimproved grassland by appropriate cutting regimes and selectively felling non-native tree species such as Sycamore and Turkey Oak from the woodland. Volunteer groups support this work where they can.
Areas of the now rare unimproved chalk grassland fringe the less diverse recreational grassland. Species found include:
- Common Knapweed (Centaura nigra)
- Field Scabious (Knautia arvensis)
- Eyebright (Euphrasia sp.)
- Common Spotted Orchids (Dactylorhiza fuscii)
Scattered throughout are areas of chalk scrub comprising:
- Hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna)
- Dogwood (Cornus sanguinea)
- Spindle (Euonymus europaeus)
English Elm (Ulmus procera) regeneration from rootstock unaffected by Dutch Elm Disease which kills above ground parts of the tree is frequent around the sites fringes and this is supplemented by Ash (Fraxinus excelsior), Oak (Quercus robur and cerris) and Sycamore (Acer pseudoplatanus) on the slopes.
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Page last updated: 09 August 2022