A small conservation area was established behind Cambrai Lines, Catterick Garrison, in September 1992 with financial assistance and personnel from The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards. The Regiment had recently returned from active service in what has since become known as the First Gulf War.
In April 2001 the area now known as Foxglove Covert was declared a Site of Local Nature Conservation Importance (SLNCI) appearing in Richmondshire District Council Local Plan. It was the first Local Nature Reserve in Richmondshire, North Yorkshire and the first on Ministry of Defence land in the UK.
The site is managed in such a way as to retain and enhance the varied habitats but also to allow the local community to enjoy and appreciate it, with a strong emphasis on education at all levels. It has a reputation as a rich wildlife habitat and for excellence in bird ringing.
In March 2010, the environmental value of the reserve was further recognised with the signing of an Environmental Stewardship Agreement between the Management Group and Natural England.
The overall management of the site is the responsibility of the Management Group which is made up of representatives of the two organisations mentioned above, Natural England, and a number of volunteers who have an interest in making the reserve a success. There are also two Reserve Managers who are responsible for the day-to-day management of the site, co-ordinating the volunteers and acting as a guide for visitors. They are very often the first point of contact for people arriving on the reserve for the first time.
In addition to its primary purpose as a conservation area, Foxglove Covert makes a first-class venue for people looking for somewhere to hold a meeting or a function with or without a wildlife theme. No charge is made for individuals who visit the reserve although a contribution towards the running costs is always welcome.