This site provides a valuable open space in the middle of an industrial and shopping
area near Bletchley. There is a pleasant circular walk around the lake and an adjoining meadow which has a slight hill for those wishing to walk to the far side. The surfaced footpath around the lake has one or two uneven places, but is generally suitable for wheelchairs. There are picnic tables and benches on the site.
The lake is divided into two parts connected by a narrow channel over which there is a footbridge. There is a small island in the lake. The meadow is at the far side of The Inn on the Lake and is surrounded by trees. The circular walk is about a mile in length with a variety of wild flowers and water birds to enjoy. Trees have been planted to give interest throughout the year, others have grown there for many years.
A private fishing club uses the lake and several platforms have been provided for its members. These are not suitable places for children to walk down or play around. Swimming is not permitted anywhere in the lake.
Mount Farm Lake is on the site of a former gravel pit, which was worked between 1928 and 1937. When it was abandoned, it filled with water and local people used it for swimming and the margins for sun-bathing as there were no proper facilities in the area at that time. In 1973 it became one of the first balancing lakes to be landscaped and opened up as parkland by Milton Keynes Development Corporation. It is now managed by Milton Keynes Council. Surface water enters the lake in several places and leaves it in a stream which flows into the River Ouzel south of Simpson Village. Oil barriers have been installed to keep the water as clean as possible.
What to look for
On the lake Mute Swan, Coot, Great Crested Grebe, Moorhen, Canada Goose and Cormorant may be seen, with several of these nesting. There has been a heronry in the trees on the island for the last few years, so Grey Heron can be seen regularly. In the reeds, Reed Warbler and Reed Bunting have nested and in the nearby bushes and hedges Goldfinch, Blackcap and other songbirds may be seen.
The flowers growing near to the lakeside include Yellow Iris, Purple Loosestrife, Gipsywort, Meadowsweet and Great Willowherb with Bulrush, Common Reed, Field Horsetail and Branched Bur-reed on the lake edge and with both Yellow Water-lily and White Water-lily on the water. Both Common Spotted- and Bee Orchids have been found on the site with a wide variety of meadow flowers, including Common Mallow, Field Madder, Lady’s Bedstraw and Common Bird’s-foot-trefoil. An unusual tree growing by the lake is Caucasian Wingnut.
Butterflies found on the site include Orange-tip, Holly Blue, Meadow Brown, Ringlet, Peacock and Small Tortoiseshell.
Dragonflies enjoy lakeside areas on sunny days, including Brown Hawker, Four-spotted Chaser, Common Darter together with Azure, Common Blue, Emerald and Blue-tailed Damselflies.
In the evening, various species of bat may be seen and the grass is grazed by Rabbits.
Fish found in the lake are Common Carp, Tench, Pike and Bream.
Mount Farm species glossary
The scientific names of all the species mentioned for Mount Farm Lake can be found in order of appearance in this species glossary.
How to get there
By car: Turn into Bond Avenue from Bletcham Way and the entrance into the site (Grid Reference SP 880350) is on the left. Once inside the site, turn right where car parking is available at the ‘Inn on the Lake’ car park.
The nearest public transport
Bus number 5 and number 5A stop in Bond Avenue about 100 metres from the main entrance to the site approximately every 8 minutes Monday–Saturday and every 15 minutes on Sundays.
Places of interest nearby
Nearby places of interest for walking and seeing wildlife include Caldecotte Lake and the Grand Union canal.