The Trust is a registered charity, founded in 1962 by a group of local naturalists who were concerned about the severe decline in wildlife happening at that time. Since then we have grown into a very effective conservation organisation employing over 40 staff, helped by thousands of volunteers and supported by nearly 14,000 members. The situation for wildlife has improved since then, but we are still losing prime wildlife habitat and many rare and even common species continue to decline. Wildlife still faces many threats, and we are here to protect it.
Our head office is just outside Truro at Allet in our Five Acres Nature Reserve, but we work across the whole of Cornwall. No other organisation does what we do, which is to work solely to protect Cornwall's wildlife and wild places, particularly habitats and species that are rare or endangered, such as lowland heathland habitat and the marsh fritillary butterfly.
Our work is very varied, from conserving habitats on land through our 57 nature reserves and conservation projects, and at sea through our marine projects and activities, to inspiring people to love and care for their local wildlife through our education programme, our events and by giving expert advice about wildlife in Cornwall. Our Local and Specialist Groups, mostly made up of keen volunteers, work on a variety of local conservation projects and run many of our events. Anyone can join these groups, they are always happy to see new faces!
An important resource to ourselves and the county as a whole is the Environmental Records Centre for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly (ERCCIS), which we host at our head office at Allet. ERCCIS provides an invaluable resource, acting as a central database that collects, verifies, manages and disseminates information about both the biological and geological state of the county.
Our detailed knowledge of Cornwall's habitats, based on years of survey work, places us in a unique position to defend the wildlife outside nature reserves; we work closely with other conservation organisations, local authorities and land owners to encourage best practice in land management for the county’s environment. This includes surveying and advising on County Wildlife Sites, responding to planning developments and working on Cornwall's Biodiversity and Geodiversity Actions Plans.
Since 1992 we have also had our own consultancy arm, Cornwall Environmental Consultants Ltd (CEC), which undertakes paid advisory ecological and landscape projects - and covenants all its profits to Cornwall Wildlife Trust.
As part of its ethical approach, Cornwall Wildlife Trust aims to carry out its work in a sustainable manner and to maximise its contribution to a healthy living environment. We have undertaken an audit of our carbon footprint and continually strive to improve our performance. Cornwall Wildlife Trust is proud to have been an Investor in People company since 2005.
As a charity we receive no direct government aid and depend on the donations of people who care about wildlife and our Cornish countryside. Our membership support, of over 15,000 people which includes 3,000 junior members, is one of the largest sources of funding we have. There are many ways you can support the Trust, from joining as a member, to leaving a legacy to making a donation - everything helps us to protect Cornwall's wildlife and wild places.
Cornwall Wildlife Trust is also a member of The Wildlife Trusts, a national alliance who work to achieve the greatest benefit to wildlife on a local, regional and UK-wide scale.