Blue space connecting you to nature.

Wildlife & Environment

Caversham Lakes was once a former gravel pit, leaving a large area of wasteland outside of Reading, lying in the floodplain of the River Thames. In its development, we have transformed this site into a vibrate community destination showcasing nature at its best, bringing safe watersports, employment and business to the Thames Valley whilst enhancing the areas wide range of natural habitats supporting a diverse variety of birds, animals and wildlife.

Caversham Lakes provides the local area with safe access to Blue Space which provides an array of benefits including the improvement to mental health and wellbeing through nature and recreational use. Our mission is also to encourage a biodiversity net gain of 9.34% through planting, landscaping and introducing bird boxes and bat boxes around the lake, creating a sustainable and beautiful environment to support a diverse variety of wildlife.

There’s a wealth of birds for you to discover around Caversham Lakes with a total of 35 bird species recorded across the site in recent bird surveys carried out in 2022. Of the species observed during the surveys, 25 had green UK conservation status, nine had amber status and 1 species had red status. Species such as Red Kites, Grey Herons, Greylag Geese, Swans, Mallards and Kingfishers are among those who make Caversham Lakes their home.

Click the button below to view some of the birds recently sighted at the lake.

What is Blue Space?

Blue spaces are officially described as ‘outdoor environments–either natural or manmade–that prominently feature water and are accessible to people’.

Accessible blue spaces can help revitalise local areas and promote increased social connectedness.

People are more likely to experience mental health disorders in areas with greater population density. Overcrowding, pollution, urban violence and less social support may all be contributing factors, and this is becoming a greater challenge as more people move into towns and cities.

Natural settings have long been a potential solution – many studies have shown that when people are closer to nature, they are less stressed and their mood and general mental health improve. There has been much research into using therapeutic landscapes in cities to bring the benefits of being in nature to more people.

Being in nature is good for you — and there is plenty of research to prove it.

The Environment Agency commissioned some research to find out more and to capture the positive social and health benefits of blue space (click the button below to view more).

Benefits of Blue Space

Studies have shown numerous potential benefits of using Blue Space including:

  • Great opportunities for exercise.

  • Reduction of stress and anxiety.

  • Improvement of mental health and wellbeing.

  • Safe, appealing places for people to meet and socialise.

  • Cognitive ‘re-setting’ helping you restore tired minds.

  • Greater biodiversity.

  • Safe setting and recreation.

  • Development of practical life skills, e.g. swimming.

  • Better regulated urban temperatures.

A wonderful space!

Nature Spotting

Explore nature and see what wildlife you can spot around the lake using our new spotting sheet (download and print off below).

Tick them off as you spot them!

  • Please check that we are open before coming down to the lake as seasonal weather may affect opening times and days. Follow our social media for regular daily updates.