Fencing and gates for country parks and nature reserves

Country parks and nature reserves are all unique, and as such require tailored fencing and access control solutions, so it’s difficult to outline universal requirements. However, rural spaces commonly require fencing, gates and safety facilities designed to meet specific needs of strength and longevity, while looking attractive and fitting with the natural environment.

Beautiful places like this are visited by thousands of people every year, who come to stroll, picnic, enjoy the scenery and hopefully see some wildlife in its natural habitat, from birds of prey to herds of deer. Visitors will appreciate an ‘organic’ rather than manmade aesthetic to gates and fences. And of course, boundaries must not restrict wildlife, unless that’s required as part of a conservative project.

Here are key fencing and gate features to consider:

Manual warden barriers for car parks and public entrances

The safety of pedestrians and the important protection of wildlife and natural landscapes means vehicles should be kept at a safe distance. Our experience shows that warden barriers are relatively easy to install almost anywhere and are simple to use and maintain, allowing flexible access, i.e. for maintenance or emergency vehicles, or during designated hours. Ideally, manual barriers should be built as a standalone structure, with space for pedestrians to pass on either side. Choose a product that is easy to maintain, and doesn’t restrict wildlife. It’s also important that the barriers aren’t too obtrusive – you don’t want them to block views or create an eyesore. Galvanised and powder coated barriers will provide security and protect against rust and corrosion while providing an attractive finish.

Post and rail fencing

Classic timber post and rail fencing is a popular choice because it blends well into a natural environment and creates boundaries that don’t restrict scenic views or wildlife. Tubular metal estate fencing works well in country parks, and can provide extra strength and elegance. It can be galvanised for a virtually maintenance free lifespan, and powder coated to match the aesthetic of the park. Estate gates are also available to match your choice of fencing, creating a seamless perimeter demarcation and access solution.

Timber posts for signposting footpaths

Recommended walks and access paths are often clearly signposted so that visitors don’t get lost as they explore the country park. The solution is to install strong timber posts onto which you can easily attach signs or engrave directions. These will blend seamlessly into the landscape, while providing practical help to ramblers and dog walkers. Look out for posts that have been specially treated to last at least 25 years as they will need no extra treatment and will be extremely easy to maintain.

Timber edging and handrails for paths down slopes and steps

Wildlife havens often include sloped areas, and might even feature steps, perhaps through woodland or down escarpments. Many sites today go to great lengths to make open spaces accessible to people of all ages and abilities, so timber edging and handrails at key points will be vital for safety and support. To avoid visitors slipping and falling, it will be necessary to keep handrails and steps very well maintained. Choose timbers that are suited for in-ground use, and that won’t rot or deteriorate from insect attack. You want these additions to stay reliably strong for many years so always look for product guarantees.

Uni Gates

Known as field or uni (universal) gates, these can be hung either right or left-handed. The gate typically has an extra heavy top rail for added strength. At Jacksons, our gates are made from premium softwood planed all round for a smooth finish, making them ideal as farm or field gates and for use in larger country estates. Uni gates are available in both timber and steel options. Consider adding timed ‘self-closers’ on these to help wheelchair and mobility vehicle users get through safely. At the point of installation, be sure to allow space for vehicles to get through when necessary.

Stiles, dog gates and kissing gates

Sturdy timber dog gates allow access through the estate or country park without having to lift dogs over a fence or stile. They’re very popular with dog owners as this feature helps them avoid muddy paws on clothes. Kissing gates provide an attractive way of restricting vehicle access to open parkland and nature reserves, while letting walkers through. These can be metal or timber, and allow easy access while keeping larger animals in their designated areas.

Welded mesh panels and gates

Mesh panels and gates are ideal for securing areas such as power reserves and sewage pipes on country parks and around nature reserves. These specially designed fencing solutions can be coated green to blend in, with foliage grown around to hide any metalwork. These are an essential addition around areas where wildlife must be kept out for their own safety.

Everyone enjoys the glory of the great outdoors. With some careful thought about safety, security and aesthetics, the management of boundaries and internal fencing and access points of nature reserves and country estates can be a breeze.

For more advice and product information regarding nature reserve and country estate fencing, contact us today.

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