Correspondences between UK Lowland Grassland Habitats Types


The table below shows how the different lowland grassland habitat types recognised by the mainstream habitat classifications in the UK relate to each other. The types included are those recognised under the UK Biodiversity Action Plan (UK BAP), the EU Habitats Directive, and the British National Vegetation Classification (NVC).


The table shows only how the types broadly fit together – some Lowland Grassland Habitats may belong to other habitat types. For more detailed information see the NBN dictionary of habitat correspondences interactive spreadsheet.


Click on the links to access the definitions of the UK BAP and EU Annex I types. Full definitions of the NVC types are available via the British Plant Communities books.


UK BAP priority habitats

EU Habitats Directive Annex I habitats

National Vegetation Classification types

Lowland meadows

H6510 Lowland hay meadows (Alopecurus pratensis, Sanguisorba officinalis

MG4 Alopecurus pratensis-Sanguisorba officinalis grassland


MG1c-e Arrhenatherum elatius grassland, Filipendula ulmaria, Pastinaca sativa and Centaurea nigra sub-communities

MG2 Arrhenatherum elatius-Filipendula ulmaria tall-herb grassland

MG5 Cynosurus cristatus-Centaurea nigra grassland

MG7c-related Alopecurus pratensis-Poa trivialis-Cardamine pratensis floodplain grassland

MG8 Cynosurus cristatus-Caltha palustris grassland

Upland hay meadows

H6520 Mountain hay meadows 

MG3 Anthoxanthum odoratum-Geranium sylvaticum grassland

Lowland calcareous grassland

H6210 Semi-natural dry grasslands and scrubland facies: on calcareous substrates (Festuco-Brometalia) (including important orchid sites)

CG1 Festuca ovina-Carlina vulgaris grassland

CG2 Festuca ovina-Avenula pratensis grassland

CG3 Bromus erectus grassland

CG4 Brachypodium pinnatum grassland

CG5 Bromus erectus-Brachypodium pinnatum grassland

CG6 Avenula pubescens grassland

CG7 Festuca ovina-Hieracium pilosella-Thymus praecox/pulegioides

CG8 Sesleria albicans-Scabiosa columbaria grassland

CG9 Sesleria albicans-Galium sterneri grassland

CG10 Festuca ovina-Agrostis capillaris-Thymus praecox grassland

Lowland dry acid grassland

H2330 Inland dunes with open Corynephorus and Agrostis grasslands

SD11 Carex arenaria-Cornicularia aculeata dune community (inland sites)

SD12 Carex arenaria-Festuca ovina-Agrostis capillaris dune grassland (inland sites)

not covered

U1 Festuca ovina-Agrostis capillaris-Rumex acetosella grassland

U3 Agrostis curtisii grassland

U4 Festuca ovina-Agrostis capillaris-Galium saxatile grassland

U5 Nardus stricta-Galium saxatile grassland

SD8 Festuca rubra-Galium verum fixed dune grassland (inland sites)

SD10 Carex arenaria dune community (inland sites)

U20a Pteridium aquilinum-Galium saxatile community, Anthoxanthum odoratum sub-community

Purple moor grass and rush pastures

H6410 Molinia meadows on calcareous, peaty or clayey-silt-laden soils (Molinion caeruleae

M24 Molinia caerulea-Cirsium dissectum fen-meadow

M26 Molinia caerulea-Crepis paludosa mire


M22 Juncus subnodulosus-Cirsium palustre fen-meadow

M23 Juncus effusus/acutiflorus-Galium palustre rush-pasture

M25 Molinia caerulea-Potentilla erecta mire

Calaminarian grasslands

H6130 Calaminarian grasslands of the Violetalia calaminariae 

OV37 Festuca ovina-Minuartia verna community

[created July 2010; revsied 2 Oct 2014]