St Austell Clay Pits IPA

Location: Cornwall, north-west of St Austell, and south-east of the A30.

Grid Reference: SW 980 564

St. Austell Clay Pits IPA has been recognised as one of 165 Important Plant Areas in the UK.

The key features of this IPA are:

  • One of the UK’s most important populations of western rustwort.
  • The old clay pits around St Austell comprise 3 different sites. All lie on china workings, on pits, spoil tips or vegetation-covered granite debris and were, until quite recently, mined for china clay.

    This particular substrate (exposed clay waste and decaying granite rocks) supports the growth of the internationally rare liverwort, the western rushwort, Marsupella profunda, which is found in only three sites in the United Kingdom.