Welcome to the website of the Friends of Rowley Hills. Our aims are to conserve and enhance the Rowley Hills for the benefit of wildlife and the local community.

The Rowley Hills (image © Mike Poulton)

The Rowley Hills

The Rowley Hills are a range of four hills – Turner’s Hill, Bury Hill, Portway Hill and Darby’s Hill – located within an urban setting in the West Midlands. One of the largest areas of grassland in the county, the hills are a haven for nature within the city, are of huge geological interest and have a fascinating history.

Bee Orchid (image ©Jane Tavener)

Bee Orchid

The hills are a butterfly hotspot thanks to the numerous wildflowers which carpet the grassland in spring and summer; species such as Marbled White, Green Hairstreak, Small Heath, Common Blue and Small Copper may be seen. Many beautiful wildflowers and grasses provide ideal habitat for butterflies and other insects, including Bee Orchid, Hare’s-foot Clover and Yellow Rattle. Their elevation means that the hills can attract unusual bird species on migration; they are also excellent for birds of prey including Kestrel, Peregrine, Buzzard and Sparrowhawk, and for warblers in spring and summer. Most of the Rowley Hills have either SLINC (Site of Local Importance for Nature Conservation) or SINC (Site of Importance for Nature Conservation) designation.

The Rowley Rag

The Rowley Rag

On Portway Hill exposures of the Rowley Rag, a hard dark grey rock which formed from molten magma within a volcano 300 million years ago, form a dramatic backdrop to the living landscape. Many interesting features may be observed including spheroidal weathering and columnar jointing.

The Rowley Rag has been extensively quarried and at various times used for kerbstones, gutters, cobblestones and aggregate. Today, the quarries are disused and most have been filled in, leaving nature to take over the site once more.

The Hills are open to the public all year round; why not come and enjoy the natural and industrial heritage to be found in this unique Black Country gem?

Big Lottery Fund logoGm2LF logo

13 thoughts on “Home

  1. Lynn

    I’ve looked at the amazing photos on the gallery pages. They are amazing and show what a beautiful place we have on the Rowley Hills. Thank you for bringing all of this to our attention – we must spread the word and encourage others to come and take a look too – spring is on the way!


  2. Anthony hall

    I have three horse chestnut trees in pots that I grew from seed they are between six and eight feet high and really need to be established in the ground is there anywhere in the Rowley hills where they could be planted


    1. janetav Post author

      Hi Anthony, I’m afraid as a non-native species they are not really suitable for planting in the Rowley Hills as they don’t bring much benefit to the native wildlife. Additionally they would be unlikely to thrive as the soil is not really good enough for large trees to grow. You could try offering them to a local park?


  3. Luke Holloway

    While on my daily run through the hills I came across two very polite men who were tidying up some dead overgrowth. It’s an absolute pleasure to meet people who work so hard during there free time to help maintain such a rare and picturesque place.

    Please if you can get in touch and if you can help these guys out!

    I am keen to lend a hand, and look forward to joining in.

    Also if you are local search

    “Tower Road NHW” on the neighbourhood watch website and please join.


  4. Kitty jenkins

    I would like details of the walks around the hills. I lived in the quarry houses that were on the centre of turners hill . It was gadds green


    1. janetav Post author

      Hi Kitty, we’ve received your membership application – you should get an email from WordPress to follow our blog. Once you’ve approved that you will receive updates about our events etc.


  5. Mike

    Interesting isn’t it how a conservative MP like James Morrison can attend and show interest in a conservation group meeting like ours yet a Labour MP like Adrian Bailey, who lives locally, can’t. Not even a local Council representative can be bothered to show any interest in an important ‘Selling Point’ which the Rowley Hills provide for tourism.
    We may only work in small numbers ‘Financially’ but ‘Green Spaces’ like this contribute to a healthier local population and make the area more attractive to look at.
    It shows our local authority does not value low cost eco projects like ours but values the money of ‘Concrete and Brick’ projects for short term economic gain.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.