The RSPB has temporarily closed its visitor centre and car park at the new St Aidan’s Nature Park after landowner UK Coal went into administration.
The park will remain open, but Peter Robinson, RSPB regional director, said it took the decision as a result of legal uncertainty.
He said: “The footpaths and bridleways will remain open, and RSPB staff and volunteers will continue to be present on site, to ensure visitors are still able to enjoy this wonderful place.
“The RSPB has no legal tenure and cannot continue to operate the car park and visitor centre on the basis of goodwill alone.
“UK Coal, the current landowner, went into administration on July 9 which has created significant uncertainty over when the handover to Leeds City Council, and the subsequent lease to the RSPB, will be in place.
“The RSPB is continuing to work closely with both parties to secure the future of St Aidan’s, and hopes to reopen its visitor operation as soon as possible.”
St Aidan’s, a former open cast mining site, opened in May.
Visit www.rspb.org.uk/staidans for more information about the site.