Mill Meadows, Billericay, is a 90-acre Local Nature Reserve and one of
the finest ancient meadow systems in Essex. Centuries of grazing have
created the ideal conditions for a wonderful diversity of wild flowers,
fungi, insects and invertebrates, many of which are rare. It contains an
area of 16.63 acres (6.73 ha) declared as a Site of Special Scientific
for its unimproved neutral grassland.
The site is protected from development by green belt planning
legislation and by a covenant lasting until the year 2070 restricting use to
outdoor recreation and social activities. The owner of the site, Basildon
Council, is working with Natural England DEFRA to maintain and enhance the
rural character and natural history of the meadows while still allowing
visitors access for quiet recreation.
Cattle sometimes graze on the reserve during the spring and summer
months. This grazing encourages the growth of flora. The cattle are
indifferent to people and dogs provided that they are not harassed in any
Dogs, kept under control, are allowed on the reserve. Please pick up dog
litter. Bins are provided for disposal.
The site has rare species and supports a characteristic flora of a
grassland type that is very much reduced within the Essex landscape, due to
development and agricultural improvement.