Dr Lesley Batty

Dr Lesley Batty

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
Senior Lecturer in Environmental Science

Contact details

+44 (0)121 41 47874
+44 (0)121 41 45528
School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
Room 304
Geography Building
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Lesley Batty is a Senior Lecturer in Environmental Science (teaching focussed) and brings her enthusiasm and expertise in this area to all aspects of her work. She is also Programme Lead for Environmental Sciences.

She has a particular interest in the ecology of industrial pollution and has spent a lot of time working in and around old metal and coal mines. Lesley is also highly active outside Birmingham and has published several textbooks, acts as associate editor for the Journal of Geochemical Exploration and is a key member of the British Ecological Society.


PhD University of Sheffield

MRes Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Reading

BSc (Hons) Natural Environmental Science, University of Reading

Postgraduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching, University of Birmingham


I am a teaching focussed member of staff with a commitment to providing innovative research-led teaching.  I have been responsible for the development of innovative educational methods through the use of Enquiry Based Learning, embedding careers within the curriculum, using social media and both formative and summative assessment. I have significant engagement and impact through my work with the British Ecological Society and Pearson, contributing to national debates and policy development within the educational system. 

I have recently been awarded £9,000 to develop Field Based Teaching using I-Pad technology by CLAD and the College of Life and Environmental Sciences

Postgraduate supervision

I am happy to receive applications for PhD study within the areas of 'ecology of industrial pollution' and 'mining pollution' from self-funded students

Current Students:

Suffeiya Supian: Carbon controls on forest litter decomposition processes

Doctoral research

PhD title
Metal removal processes in wetlands receiving acid mine drainage


Research groups

  • Water Sciences
  • Hydroecology

Research interests

  • Ecology of Industrial Pollution (Freshwaters and Land)
  • Passive Treatment Technologies
  • Phytoremediation
  • Biodiversity

Current / Recent Research

Miner-Farmer landscapes of the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) Funded by English Heritage

A collaborative project with Birmingham Archaeology


GIS-based remote-sensing and environmental research’ combines a range of remote sensing techniques in order to research the application of remote datasets for the identification of moorland industrial activity and the relationship with the natural environment and erosion, including the gathering of environmental data. The aim of this project is to evaluate the past, present and future impacts of historical industrial activity on Alston Moor including the analysis of peat erosion. Specifically, this project will use a combination of remote sensing techniques and ground-truthing in order to:

  • Record areas of archaeology, and particularly remains relating to industrial activity (including the impacts of industrial activity such as contamination) as identified through remote sensing techniques
  • Record and assess the past, present and future impacts of historical industrial activity on the landscape, specifically in relation to contamination (identified through a combination of remote sensing techniques and soil sampling)
  • Record and assess the impact of peat erosion and other erosion (especially water erosion) on the present and future preservation of the archaeological resource in relation to the future management of this landscape
  • To assess the efficacy of novel remote-sensing techniques for the interpretation and management of this and similar landscapes

Hence the project is aimed at providing information towards the formulation of a management plan for the North Pennines region, and for the generation of a useful toolkit for application within similar landscapes elsewhere. These aims will be achieved through:

  • The investigation of current sources of satellite data, aerial imagery and the analysis of LIDAR data for the identification of past industrial activity and its relationship to areas of peat erosion and land improvement. The survey area will cover 32 square kilometres of the Alston Moor area
  • The analysis of multi- and hyper-spectral data of the same sample area as above providing a comparison of the different techniques for identification of industrial remains.
  • A programme of borehole excavation and soil analyses to assess for mining debris and contamination in the sample area. The results will provide validation of non-invasive interpretations and will complement the above, providing baseline data for the application of these techniques elsewhere. 

Other activities

  • Programme Lead for Environmental Sciences 
  • Associate Editor for Journal of Geochemical Exploration
  • Deputy Chair of the Education, Training and Careers Committee for the British Ecological Society
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy
  • GEES Academic Lead for Collaborative Teaching Lab



Cresser, M., Batty, L.C., 2013 An Integrated Introduction to Environmental Science, Pearson UK Undergraduate Text Book

Batty, L.C., Hallberg, K.  (Eds) 2010 Ecology of Industrial Pollution: restoration, remediation and preservation.  Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK. 350pp ISBN 978-0-521-73038-9

Harrad, S.J., Batty, L.C., Diamond, M. and Arhonditsis, G. 2008. Student projects in Environmental Science. Wiley Publishers, Chichester Undergraduate and Postgraduate Text Book 163pp

Key Publications since 2011

Chibuike, C and Batty. L. 2015 Chelate assisted phytoremediation of Cu-pyrene contaminated soil using Z. mays Water, Air and Soil Pollution 226

Chibuike, C and Batty, L.C. 2014 Phytoremediation for co-contaminated soils of chromium and benzo (a) pyrene using Zea mays. Environmental Science and Pollution Research 21, 3051-3059

Kincey, M., Batty, L.,  Chapman, H.,  Gearey, B. Ainsworth, S., Challis, K. 2014 Assessing the changing condition of industrial archaeological remains on Alston Moor, UK, using multisensor remote sensing  Journal of Archaeological Science 45, 36-51 

Lynch, S., Batty, L.C., Byrne, P. 2014 Environmental risk of metal mining contaminated river bank sediment at redox-transitional zones Minerals, 4, 52-73

Chibuike, C., Batty, L.C. 2013 Phytoremediation potential of Brassica juncea in Cu-pyrene contaminated soil: comparing freshly spiked soil with aged soil Journal of Environmental Management 129, 18-24

Chibuike, C., Batty, L.C. 2013 Interactions of copper and pyrene on phytoremediation potential of Brassica juncea in copper-pyrene co-contaminated soil Chemosphere, 90, 2542-2548

Chibuike, C., Batty, L.C. 2013 Effect of combined pollution of chromium and benzo(a)pyrene on seed growth of Lolium perenne. Chemosphere, 90, 164-169

Chibuike, C., Batty, L.C. Effect of EDTA and citric acid on phytoremediation of Chromium-B(a) P co-contaminated soil Environmental Science and Pollution Research 20, 8955-8963

Batty, L.C., Dolan, C. 2013 The potential use of phytoremediation for sites with mixed organic and inorganic contamination.  Critical Reviews in Environmental Science and Technology, 43, 1-43

Jadeja, R.N., Batty, L.C. 2013 Metal content of seaweeds in the vicinity of acid mine drainage in Amlwch, North Wales Indian Journal of Geo-marine Sciences 42, 16-20

Gubbins, E., Batty, L.C., Lead, J.R. 2011 Phytotoxicity of silver nanoparticles to Lemna minor L. Environmental Pollution 159, 1551-1559