The community and wildlife lovers in Dorset are today celebrating the news of a £119,778 funding boost from SITA Trust to help restore Upton Heath after the devastating fire last year. This is in addition to money raised by public appeal, which totals over £50,000 and has been instrumental in achieving this funding award.
The project will focus not only on the burnt area but on restoring a recently acquired section of the heath
Following the blaze, which swept through a third of the heath, work begins to bring the area back to a good condition for the extremely rare wildlife that depends on the priority UK Biodiversity Action Plan habitat. The project will focus not only on the burnt area but on restoring a recently acquired section of the heath, which is urgently in need of management work following years of invasion by pine, birch and some non-native species.
something that we can all take pride in once again
Andy Fale, Upton Heath Restoration Project Officer, said: “We are on the threshold of a very exciting period for Upton Heath, thanks to this funding and the generous donations of the public. We and the local community have an opportunity to restore the damaged and degraded habitats and bring the whole heath together as a 500 acre site of unbroken prime wildlife habitat, something that we can all take pride in once again.”
Jools Granville of SITA Trust said: “Restoration work will include the introduction of traditional heathland grazing across the whole heath and removal of a block of invasive trees in the south-western section, as well as ongoing control of scrub, cutting of fire defendable lines, improved access and monitoring.”
If you would like to volunteer to help Dorset Wildlife Trust on Upton Heath, please contact the wardens on 01202 692033 or click here.
SITA Trust provides funding through the Landfill Communities Fund. Funding is available for projects that enhance communities and enrich nature.
Notes to Editor
For more information please contact Nicky Hoar at Dorset Wildlife Trust on 01305 264620.
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About Dorset Wildlife Trust www.dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk
Working for a secure future for Dorset’s wildlife enriching the quality of life
Dorset Wildlife Trust is part of the Natural Weymouth and Portland Partnership; connecting people with nature
Dorset Wildlife Trust works to champion wildlife and natural places, to engage and inspire people and to promote sustainable living. Founded in 1961, DWT is now the largest voluntary nature conservation organisation in Dorset, with over 25,000 members and over 40 nature reserves. Most are open daily and there are visitor centres providing a wealth of wildlife information at Brooklands Farm, Lorton Meadows, Kingcombe Meadows and Brownsea Island Nature Reserves, The Purbeck Marine Wildlife Reserve and the Urban Wildlife Centre at Upton Heath Nature Reserve. DWT plays a key role in dealing with local environmental issues and leads the way in establishing the practices of sustainable development and engaging new audiences in conservation, particularly in the urban areas.
Launch of DWT Upton Heath Restoration Project N HOAR
Upton Heath - Tony Bates