Hoe Grange Quarry butterfly reserve offers free tours this weekend

Butterfly Conservation and Derbyshire Wildlife Trust will be opening up Hoe Grange Quarry, Derbyshire's only butterfly reserve, for public tours on Sunday, June 17 (Photo: Keith Warmington)
Butterfly Conservation and Derbyshire Wildlife Trust will be opening up Hoe Grange Quarry, Derbyshire's only butterfly reserve, for public tours on Sunday, June 17 (Photo: Keith Warmington)

Wildlife lovers have a rare opportunity to see the county’s largest colony of Common Blue butterflies at Hoe Grange Quarry when it opens its gates to the public for the first time this year on Sunday, June 17.

Butterfly recorder Ken Orpe said: “The Common Blue is doing really well at Hoe Grange and in a good year, you can see as many as 200 butterflies on one day.

“We’re inviting families to come and see this butterfly and other species like the Wall butterfly, 11am to 4pm.”

He added: “We have a number of day-flying moths like the beautiful Wood Tiger, but we also have plenty of night-time moths that people wouldn’t normally see, like the bright pink and green Elephant Hawk.”

The former limestone quarry, which lies between Brassington and Elton was left to wildlife in the 1970s and is now home to more than 26 species of butterfly thanks to the efforts of Butterfly Conservation and Derbyshire Wildlife Trust.

Visitors will be given a guided tour of the reserve, which is also full of orchid flowers and other wildlife, and free ice cream will be on offer throughout the day alongside stalls selling plants, tea and cake.

For more details, visit butterfly-conservation.org/HoeGrange.