Journal of Coastal Conservation

, Volume 19, Issue 6, pp 875–883 | Cite as

Holy Island coast, Anglesey: a review of conservation management, issues and solutions

  • J. B. RatcliffeEmail author
  • D. M. Bateson


The coast of Holy Island, situated off the Isle of Anglesey, Wales, is recognised for its geological, biological, cultural, aesthetic and recreational values by multiple conservation designations. The ecological functions of geology, climate, soil, biota, human history and current management in shaping this landscape are outlined. Much of the site is now managed by the RSPB as their “South Stack” nature reserve. The challenge of addressing the sometimes conflicting objectives of diverse interests in an iconic landscape is described. Solutions have developed through monitoring of key features and understanding of ecological relationships and through close liaison between local managers and the various communities of interest. In the process pioneering approaches have been developed which are now accepted practice elsewhere.


Sea cliffs Seabird colonies Reserve management RSPB South Stack Glannau Ynys Gybi Maritime heath Coastal heath 



We thank Alastair Moralee of the RSPB for many stimulating discussions on the management of this area and the constructive comments of an anonymous reviewer.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Natural Resources WalesBangorUK
  2. 2.Royal Society for the Protection of BirdsSouth Stack Visitor Centre, South StackHolyheadUK

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