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Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust


Keeping balance between farming and nature

We have been working closely with the GWT to keep a harmonious relationship between our dairy cows and the wildlife on the reserve.

The main way in which we work together to do this is via conservation or targeted grazing. Conservation grazing involves the use of grazing livestock to maintain and increase the biodiversity of grasslands, heathlands, wood pasture, wetlands and many other habitats; here at Greystone’s we have wetlands and grasslands that our herd graze upon. Conservation grazing, is a less intensive form of grazing than traditional farming methods and this helps to decrease the dominance of invasive species and to increase the presence and diversity of rarer plants. This, in turn, has a positive knock-on effect to insects, invertebrates and wild animals.

We haven't stopped there at keeping the wildlife happy, we also endeavour to keep the ladies happy too! We installed a 'Freedom Milking Parlour' which uses a robotic milking system where the cows can be milked in their own time. Milk from the cows is then used to make award winning cheeses at Simon Weaver Organic near the Slaughters - both the milk and cheeses are be available in the vending machines for you to take home and enjoy as you wish! Click here to go to the cheese website!

Both the GWT and ourselves encourage people and dogs to enjoy walking the permitted routes and come see our gorgeous ladies happily grazing or wandering through the robotic milker.

Please be mindful of the cows should you bring your pooch - cows can be quite intimidating those who have not seen them before!



Click the button below to head to the GWTs page on Greystones Farm.

You will find information about the reserve, access to Guided Walks leaflets, how to contact the trust, how to contribute and more.

The Meadows

The nature reserve is split into three meadow systems which you can learn about below...


The Monument Meadows are home to Salmonsbury Camp and is important as the site of an ancient iron age settlement; the dairy herd management help maintain the archaeological interest with limited disturbance to the soils.

The Restoration Meadows were formerly ‘improved’ through the additional of fertilizer, favouring more vigorous grasses which outcompete wildflowers. GWT and ourselves are working together to restore these meadows to their former glory through reseeding from the SSSI and targeting the cutting and grazing of the meadows at different times to the SSSI Meadows, cutting earlier, and grazing for longer to knock back the strong grass growth.


The SSSI Meadows (Site of Special Scientific Interest) are designated as they represent the best example of this this type of habitat in the UK and consist of eleven meadows near the confluence of the River’s Eye and Dickler. It is one of the richest and largest traditional meadow systems remaining in the Cotswolds, with over 100 meadow plants recorded.

The meadows are allowed to grow until late summer when they are cut for hay, which provides food for the dairy herd over the winter months. The dairy herd is then introduced after the cutting for aftermath grazing which expands the spread of seeds, and their hooves push seeds into the ground and also creates small pockets of bare ground to aid seed germination. The herd are moved on before it gets too wet as the SSSI Meadows are part of the floodplain.

Through our combined management, the SSSI is in favourable condition, and the restoration meadows are showing very good progress with increased wildflowers recorded each year.

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