CASH BOOST FOR THE TAME VALLEY WETLANDS
By Ann Evans
Warwickshire Wildlife Trust has been awarded a £50,000 grant from Biffa Award to create a new community wetland at Kingsbury Water Park in North Warwickshire, as part of the Tame Valley Wetlands Landscape Partnership Scheme.
The Biffa Award is a multi-million pound fund that helps to build communities and transforms lives through awarding grants to community and environmental projects across the UK. This latest grant to the Tame Valley Wetlands combined with funding already secured from the Heritage Lottery Fund and The Howard Victor Skan Charitable Trust aims to create an exciting outdoor space benefiting people and wildlife.
Their vision is to create a wetland landscape, rich in wildlife and accessible to all. Work includes conservation projects to restore heritage and enhance the area for wildlife, access improvements, training and volunteering opportunities, as well as a programme of exciting events and activities aimed at all ages and interests.
The Kingsbury wetland project will see the creation of reed-beds, ponds and a sand martin bank, as well as the restoration of rare floodplain meadow, making a fantastic new home for wildlife on former waterlogged football pitches. The hope then is that priority conservation species will inhabit the site, from amphibians and birds, such as Snipe and Sand Martins, to mammals such as otters and bats.
There’s plans also for a new raised viewing platform with an outdoor seating area to be constructed, providing a vantage point for visitors to watch wildlife as well as acting as an outdoor classroom for local schools. The addition of a pond dipping platform will provide hours of fun for enquiring minds, investigating invertebrate life around the pond margins.
Tracey Doherty, Wetland Landscape Officer for the Scheme, said, “We are delighted to be awarded this substantial funding from Biffa Award, the Heritage Lottery Fund and The Howard Victor Skan Charitable Trust. It is a great example of how funders and organisations can deliver more by working together in partnership”.
Paula Cheesman, Country Parks Manager for Warwickshire County Council said, “The new community wetland will add an exciting new asset to the Country Park for visitors and the local community to enjoy.”
DISCOVER FREE EVENTS
Locals who enjoy being out in the fresh air might want to get hold of a copy of the latest Tame Valley Wetlands Activity Guide which covers free events and activities for the family from now until April 2016. The booklet is available from various outlets across the Tame Valley Wetlands including Kingsbury Water Park, or download a copy from their website.
Here’s a few events taking place this month.
Saturday 23-24 January 9.30am-4pm. Hedge laying taster weekend. Over the course of the weekend, learn how to lay a hedge using heritage skills. Laid hedges are more resistant and a better home for wildlife. This takes place at RSPB Middleton Lakes.
Wednesday 27 January 10am-11.30am. Wintertree ID. Learn how to identify the various different trees that can be found at Whitacre Heath with Warwickshire Wildlife Trust. Meet at Whitacre Heath Nature Reserve.
Volunteers are always needed at the Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, and the Tame Force is a team of enthusiastic volunteers who want to help wildlife and people. They visit different locations in the Tame Valley Wetlands, doing practical conservation and access work. For details contact: email@example.com
Further information: http://www.tamevalleywetlands.co.uk/