We are awarded National Lottery funding to restore nature

9th January, 2020
by Julian | 3 Min Read
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The Sharpham Trust has been awarded £177,400 from The National Lottery Heritage Fund to make more space for wildlife and take action for nature.

The National Lottery funding will assist in turning the Sharpham Estate organic, re-wilding parts of its historic landscape and helping more people engage with the nature there.

Habitats, flora and fauna – from rare plants, beetles and butterflies to starlings, cirl buntings and otters - have suffered serious declines across the UK. But these will be supported and restored, thanks to the funding.

The money will go towards a new approach to managing the 18th century parkland landscape of the Sharpham Estate – thought to have been sculpted by Capability Brown.

“Thanks to the National Lottery funding, we’ve got a great opportunity for us to enable nature to flourish on the Sharpham Estate and to share this story with local people and our other visitors, said Julian Carnell, Director of The Sharpham Trust.

“We are part of a wider re-wilding movement looking to help reverse the catastrophic decline in our wildlife,” he added.

Wild for People

The 3-year project, called Wild for People, will enhance the biodiversity of the historic 550-acre estate, stretching along the River Dart outside Totnes, South Devon.

The management of the landscape will change from a conventional chemical approach to organic farming, less intensive grazing (re-wilding) and a restoration of the wood pasture habitat that would have originally characterised the park.

It will also encourage a wider range of people to engage with and understand the natural heritage there.

This restoration will enable a new programme of public engagement – enticing more people to immerse themselves in the history and wildlife of the estate, including schoolchildren, young people, adults with learning disabilities and the general public.

Public access to the estate will be enhanced, with activities including:

  • wildlife events
  • conservation volunteering & training
  • Bioblitz, wildlife surveys and conservation training

Partners in the project

Ambios Ltd, an organisation based at Lower Sharpham Farm on the estate, will run a conservation training scheme through which people will develop new skills and understanding of the heritage and biodiversity there.

The funding means that Ambios will develop its existing work in surveying and collecting nature data, ensuring that Sharpham’s wildlife will be enhanced, protected and more resilient.

This project is one of 15 projects awarded a share of £7.4million from The National Lottery which will empower communities and volunteers to play an integral part in securing a bright and thriving future for our natural world.

Stuart McLeod, Director London & South at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: “Nature is our oldest form of heritage but it is under threat and action needs to be taken. Thanks to National Lottery players, Sharpham will create vital space for wildlife and fauna to thrive while enabling people to connect with nature and empowering them to play a part in securing its future.”

About The National Lottery Heritage Fund

Using money raised by the National Lottery, The National Lottery Heritage Fund inspires, leads and resources the UK’s heritage to create positive and lasting change for people and communities, now and in the future.

Follow @HeritageFundUK on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and use #NationalLotteryHeritageFund

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