YWT Ledston Luck Nature Reserve

A mix of woodlands, pond and meadows that are home to a wide range of wildlife.


Ledston Luck nature reserve is an example of how an old industrial landscape can be transformed into a wildlife paradise.

In the summer this nature reserve is teeming with life and colour.

Ledston Luck is part of  the Lower Aire Valley in Leeds. The 16.8-hectare reserve is owned by Leeds City Council and the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust.

Location Details

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Things to Note

YWT Ledston Luck Nature Reserve has the following on-site or nearby:

  • Dog Waste Bins
  • Nearby Food & Drink
  • Nearby Parking
  • Rubbish Bins


Ledston is a small village 10-miles east of the centre of Leeds.

Things to Do


You can walk the informal trails throughout the nature reserve. These make for an interesting stroll as you take in what was once a coal mine and is now a post-industrial nature reserve.

Pond Dipping

The pond in the centre of Ledston Luck is packed with a variety of insect life. There are up to 13-species of damsel and dragonflies including large red damselfly and emperor dragon fly.

It is worth bringing a container and magnifying glass to see what insect and amphibian life you can see in the water. Just remember to put all the creatures back before you leave!

Bird Watching

The woodland and hedgerows are home to birds including woodpeckers, grasshopper warbler and yellowhammer. Long eared owls have been seen nesting here; and the area is a breeding ground for many of these birds.

If you keep your ears alert you can practice tuning in to the beautiful birdsong from resident and migrant birds. Some of the most notable sounds have been heard from the yellowhammer, corn bunting, and willow warbler.


The reserve is notable for the 6,000 plus orchids that carpet the meadow areas across the site. These common spotted orchids are a haven for the bees and the wider ecosystem.

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Ledston Luck was originally a coal mining pit that dated back to the 1870s. After the pit was closed in 1986 it gradually developed into a new wildlife habitat.

The Yorkshire Wildlife Trust have pursued this transformation scheme with the ponds, woodlands and some meadows were created from scratch in the 1990s.


The nearest public toilet is a 5-minute walk just off Ridge Road at the Pit Stop Café.

There are dog and rubbish waste bins in the nature reserve.

Food and Drink

The Pit Stop Café located just down the road from the reserve serves burgers, kebabs, pizzas, and hot dogs. And there is a kids menu.


Parking is available at the Ledston Luck Enterprise Car Park during business hours, head to the Pit Stop café at LS25 7BF (Google Map Directions).

You will need to walk a short distance north on Ridge Road to get to the entrance of Ledston Luck Nature Reserve.


There are a network of paths around the reserve that get muddy in bad weather. These are not suitable for wheelchair and pushchair users.

You will need to keep the dog on the lead at all times.

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