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Nature Reserve:Filey Dams Nature Reserve

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  • Self-assessed Accessibility Information

Nature Reserve

Yorkshire Wildlife Trust

Yorkshire Wildlife Trust

Businesses across the Yorkshire Coast are looking forward to welcoming you back.

Please check the individual website for reopening dates, opening times and booking details.

We recommend you follow current public health advice and maintain social distancing.


The last remaining freshwater marsh of any size in the area, Filey Dams is a magnet for migratory birds but is also a haven for plants, small mammals and amphibians.

This quiet gem consists of large freshwater lagoons surrounded by marsh and grassland grazed with cattle.

Soft rush dominates, joined in the shallow water by toad rush, bottle sedge and branched bur-reed and the distinctive yellow flag iris.

A short walk from the car park and the adjacent Main Hide takes in a small copse with nestboxes used by tree sparrows, and leads along a boardwalk to a pond-dipping platform at the edge of a quiet pool. Here dragonflies skim the water settling on the mat of amphibious bistort; the fortunate might see a water vole but are more likely to hear them crunching their way through the soft stalks of water forget-me-not. All three British species of newt occur here – smooth, palmate and great crested, the latter species in nationally important numbers.

Walk further along the boardwalk and arrive at the East Pool Hide where close views can be had of water birds such as little grebe and migratory waders such as greenshank, green and wood sandpipers in the autumn. Across the pool the barn owl box may be occupied, the male often sitting nearby when displaced by his family.

The nature reserve is leased from Scarborough Borough Council and is managed in partnership with Filey Brigg Ornithological Group, who record the species of the area and carry out routine maintenance.

Accepts groups

Dogs not accepted (except guidedogs)

Open all the time


North Yorkshire,
YO14 0DG



See location of Filey Dams Nature Reserve on Google mapsSee location on Google maps

Map reference: TA 109805  Lat: 54.20855 Long: -0.29978

A car park is at the end of Wharfedale, take a left turn when entering Filey on the Muston Road from York and Bridlington, 450 metres before the railway crossing.


  • Accepts groupsAccepts groups
  • Dogs not accepted (except guidedogs)Dogs not accepted (except guidedogs)

Self-Assessed Accessibility Details


Permissive footpaths. Wheelchair access to Main Hide and pond-dipping platform. Bikes to car park only. Please stay on footpaths as soils are waterlogged much of the year.