Daneshill Lakes LNR is owned by Nottinghamshire County Council, and is now managed in partnership with the Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust. The LNR is divided into two areas north and south of the Daneshilll Road. There is a large public car park on Daneshill Road.
The LNR is located on part of the former Ranskill Royal Ordnance Factory (ROF). Construction of the factory began in 1940 and production started in 1942 producing cordite (a propellant for shells). At the height of production the site employed more than 4000 people.
The factory was closed in 1945, but retained on a care and maintenance basis until 1975. The County Council acquired the site in 1980 and restored it to a mixture of wetland, woodland, commercial forestry and agricultural land.
All that remains from the original ROF site is some of the signalling from the sidings and some of the original perimeter fencing.
The LNR is dominated by three lakes. These are the result of gravel extraction that occurred after the Royal Ordnance Factory was mothballed. The extensive lakes are important for over-wintering wildfowl, and are home to the nationally rare stonewort, a plant that inhabits the gravelly bed of the lakes. Other habitats include mixed scrub and birch woodland, which supports a wide range of bird species. There are also areas of acid grassland within the LNR that support several species of butterfly and wildflowers including a variety of orchids.
The site receives about 100,000 visitors per year. There is a good car park and a surfaced circular trail around the Main Lake suitable for people with restricted mobility and pushchairs. There are also un-surfaced woodland walks.
The Main Lake is used by the Daneshill Sailing Club on a Wednesday and Sunday throughout the summer. The Daneshill Lakes Angling Club fish the Main Lake and Car Park Lake. There is no public fishing at Daneshill Lakes LNR.
Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust manage the site and have a warden who is on site at various times throughout the week. NWT are developing a programme of practical conservation tasks and events at Daneshill Lakes.