Protecting the future of Cornwall Wildlife Trust's nature reserves

Protecting the future of Cornwall Wildlife Trust's nature reserves

Windmill Farm Nature Reserve Panoramic Landscape by Ben Watkins

Cornwall Wildlife Trust has been awarded a Government grant from the Green Recovery Challenge Fund to support nature's recovery in Cornwall. The grant will ensure important habitat creation and restoration work across and around nature reserves, whilst also helping more people benefit from access to wild spaces.

As nature continues to face significant pressures, threatening important ecosystems, Cornwall Wildlife Trust’s nature reserves provide important havens where wildlife can thrive. These 58 nature reserves, consisting of more than 5,500 acres or protected land, are home to a variety of important habitats that are increasingly at risk, including; internationally rare heathland, species-rich grassland, ancient woodland, and wetlands such as peatland (a vital resource in the fight against climate change).

Protecting, restoring, and enhancing these habitats to ensure they are in the best possible condition for wildlife is a vital part of the solution for reversing nature’s decline. Cornwall Wildlife Trust is delighted to announce that we’ve been awarded a grant of £618,200 from the Government’s Green Recovery Challenge Fund; a multi-million pound fund to create green jobs and contribute to nature’s recovery.

“Cornwall’s stunning landscapes and magnificent seas can mask the hard truth that nature is in crisis. Within our own lifetimes, we have seen the natural world transform, with a few species that can live alongside humans seeming to thrive, while other species that we, our parents or our grandparents remember from our childhoods seeming to dwindle or disappear altogether. The need for nature’s recovery is urgent.” Carolyn Cadman, Chief Executive, Cornwall Wildlife Trust

Bakers Pit

Baker's Pit is one over more than 20 nature reserves which will benefit from the grant. At the reserve, we will carry out work to restore heathland; an internationally rare habitat for which Cornwall is an important location. 

At the project’s heart is the need for bigger, better and more joined-up spaces for nature, in-line with the 2010 Lawton Report; an independent review to investigate ways of better connecting England’s wildlife to strengthen ecological networks and encourage nature to thrive against the pressures of climate change and increased rural development.

The grant will create jobs and training opportunities for 16 to 24 year-olds at Cornwall Wildlife Trust to:

  • Create, restore and improve habitats across nature reserves
  • Support neighbouring landowners to carry out interventions that benefit nature and enable wildlife to expand beyond our reserves’ borders
  • Improve access to nature reserves for people living with mobility impairments, including wheelchair users
  • Conduct outreach work with schools in areas of deprivation, helping children connect with and care for nature
  • Offer volunteer opportunities through social prescribing initiatives

“Cornwall Wildlife Trust’s nature reserves are some of the last wild spaces left in Cornwall. This project will carry out vital habitat restoration and improvement work to ensure they remain places where nature can thrive, whilst also working with neighbouring landowners to encourage wildlife to expand beyond our borders. I’m delighted we’ll be able to carry out this work, which is a step towards creating the nature network so desperately needed.” Callum Deveney, Head of Nature Reserves, Cornwall Wildlife Trust 

Cornwall Wildlife Trust is grateful to the Green Recovery Fund. The Fund is a key part of the Prime Minister’s Ten Point Plan to kick-start nature recovery, tackle climate change and connect people with nature. It was developed by Defra and its arm's-length bodies, and is being delivered by the National Lottery Heritage Fund in partnership with Natural England, the Environment Agency and Forestry Commission.

“Our environmental and conservation charity sector does an incredible job in protecting, improving and restoring the natural environment for the benefit of communities and the economy.” Tony Juniper, Chair, Natural England

To secure the grant, Cornwall Wildlife Trust was required to provide a minimum of 5% of the project total in matched funding. We were only able to do this thanks to the generosity of a supporter who had generously left a gift in her Will to support Cornwall Wildlife Trust. Gifts in Wills are vital for our work and can play an important role in helping wildlife for generations to come.

If you have any questions about the project and what it will achieve for nature in Cornwall, please contact Callum Deveney, Head of Nature Reserves.

If you would like more information on leaving a gift in your Will to Cornwall Wildlife Trust, please contact James Webb, Deputy Head of People and Engagement.