Skip to main content

Vocabulary Term Details


Definition (

Meres were formed at the end of the last Ice Age, c. 12,000 years ago. Most of the UK was buried deep under a thick ice sheet, often up to 1 kilometre thick. As the climate got warmer, the ice started to melt. The ice sheet did not melt in a nice, even, gentle way - but quite rapidly, with huge chunks of ice falling onto the landscape below. These holes are called "Kettle Holes" as they resemble the impression left by a huge kettle put down in the landscape. These Kettle Holes quickly filled with water, initially from the melting ice, but as time went by, other water filled the holes - from rain, and water from underground springs. The Kettle Holes are still here today, a landscape legacy that is over 10,000 years old! The water-filled hollows are great for wildlife, as the water feeding them from the surrounding landscape brings with it nutrients, or food for plants and animals. Local people call these Kettle Holes "Meres"- often beautiful lakes with distinctive plants and animals. Globally however, these Meres are unusual. They can only be found in ancient glacial landscapes affected by melting ice, and which are in parts of the countryside still undisturbed and wet enough to support them. (Cheshire Biodiversity)

Preferred Units: N/A

Scope Note:

Broader TermsNarrower TermsRelated Terms
Lentic waters (static)

This term is used for the following terms: 

Approved Date

Click here to give feedback on this term or suggest an update.