Weymouth’s Lorton Meadows nature reserve has become a safe haven for even more wildlife, with news that Dorset Wildlife Trust has been able to acquire an extra 14 hectares. The purchase means that the reserve has increased by around 50%, with a total of 45 hectares of varied habitat now secured for wildlife.
Home to a wide range of flowers, insects, birds and particularly renowned for birds of prey.
The new field, east of the reserve close to the Littlemoor housing estate, has public access with footpaths and a bridleway, and the continued access to this green area at the edge of Weymouth is assured. It now forms part of an extensive area of unimproved grassland, woods and ponds, home to a wide range of flowers, insects, birds and particularly renowned for birds of prey.
Sam Dallimore, Community Conservation Officer at Dorset Wildlife Trust, said: “The new addition to the reserve is now safe from any threat of development, which is good news for local people and for the wildlife of the Lorton Valley. These grasslands are good for small mammals and for Lorton’s nesting owls, which rely on the area for finding food for their young.”
Brian Bleese, Director of Operations at Dorset Wildlife Trust, said: “This has been a wonderful partnership project, supported by Dorset County Council, Natural England and F.H. Cummings Unlimited. It will be a great resource for wildlife and the local community.”
Achieving a better integration and contribution to the local community to sustain the countryside for all to enjoy
David Webb, Senior Architectural Designer at F.H. Cummings, said: “F.H. Cummings, as a property developer, sees their membership and involvement with Dorset Wildlife Trust to be an important collaboration, achieving a better integration and contribution to the local community to sustain the countryside for all to enjoy.”
Lorton Meadows is one of the best places in Dorset for spotting birds of prey, with breeding kestrel, tawny owl and barn owl, common sightings of buzzard and sparrowhawk, and a chance of seeing marsh harrier, peregrine falcon and short-eared owl. Lorton Meadows nature reserve is at Upwey DT3 5QH and is open daily free of charge. The next Conservation Centre Open Day is on Saturday 21st April from 10am to 4pm. You can watch the nesting owls live by clicking here. For more information, ring 01305 816546.
Notes to Editor
For more information please contact the membership department at Dorset Wildlife Trust on 01305 264620.
About Dorset Wildlife Trust www.dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk
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Working for a secure future for Dorset’s wildlife enriching the quality of life
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.
View to Weymouth - K Staddon