(Above) The Southern Cooperative Team with DWT's Andy Fale, Nigel Brooks (far right) and Sally Welbourn, and James Haldane (front right) © DWT (below) Andreea Tudor from Southern Cooperative working at Upton Heath © Sally Welbourn
The Southern Cooperative, who are valued corporate members of Dorset Wildlife Trust (DWT), have enjoyed getting hands-on carrying out practical nature conservation work on DWT’s nature reserve at Upton Heath.
The rain and wind didn’t deter them as they cut down pine and birch trees, and helped dig trenches, all to help protect and nurture heathland, which provides habitats for a huge variety of wildlife.
Upton Heath Warden, Nigel Brooks said, “We have a wide variety of volunteers who feel passionate about wildlife and the support of corporate volunteers is invaluable to us. They are the backbone of our winter work programme and we wouldn’t get even half of the work done without them. We want to keep the heathland open, so it is important to manage the number of pine trees and maintain selected wooded areas. It’s hard work, but we know that the volunteers get a lot out of it, and we do provide jacket potatoes to keep them going!”
Wildlife such as all six native reptiles, including the smooth snake, sand lizard and birds such as the nightjar and Dartford warbler all live on heathland, so proper management of their habitats is essential for their survival.
Nothing better than "getting dirty and helping nature"
Volunteer and Southern Cooperative store manager, David John Morgan said, “We love getting dirty and helping nature. To put a cheque in a bank account is one thing, but to actually come and help is another! It helps strengthen the morale of the team, promotes team-work and it’s nice to do something different. We feel a part of something bigger.”
DWT’s Membership Manager, James Haldane, said, “The Southern Cooperative is one of our most valued corporate members and we are very grateful for the volunteer tasks they carry out with Dorset wildlife Trust. They are always keen to get hands-on with the practical conservation, and are exceptionally generous in their support to various DWT projects around the county.”
For more information
For more information about becoming a corporate member, please visit our corporate supporters page here or contact James Haldane on 01305 264620, or email
Notes to Editor
For more information please contact Sally Welbourn at Dorset Wildlife Trust on 01305 264620.
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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.