Press Release Archive: Friday 29 May 2009
Funding Boost for the rare grassland wildlife of Lincolnshire, Leicestershire and Rutland
The Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust is delighted to have received a £89,055 funding boost from SITA Trust to help secure the future of the rare limestone grasslands of Lincolnshire, Leicestershire and Rutland.
SITA Trust provides funding through the Landfill Communities Fund. Funding is available for community and environmental groups to carry out a range of improvement projects.
The project area lies in three counties, stretching north from Peterborough to Lincoln, and covers 1,700 square miles. It is dominated by a band of limestone with shallow soils that give rise to some of the richest grasslands in the country. These grasslands can contain 40 species of plant in a square metre of turf including nationally scarce plants such as early gentian and pasqueflower, and support butterflies, glow worms, lizards, skylarks and barn owls.
But only an estimated 100 hectares of this flower-rich grassland remains, much of it confined to roadside verges, nature reserves, quarries and other scattered sites. Many sites are at risk of being managed inappropriately or are too small and fragmented to manage effectively.
The funding allocated to the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust, on behalf of the project partners including the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust, has enabled the purchase of two sets of mini-baling equipment which will facilitate the appropriate management of roadside verges. The funding will also pay for contractors to cut and bale the verges targeted for management, and to remove scrub from some verges, to maintain and restore limestone grassland habitat.
The project is also supported through Natural England’s Countdown 2010 Biodiversity Action Fund and a contribution from the Ringway Group.
Mark Schofield, Limestone Grassland Project Officer said: "This area was identified in the 1940s as a prime area for conservation and since then the grasslands and their important species have become increasingly scarce. With this boost from the SITA Trust funding we will be able to manage limestone grassland verges in a way that will help the wild plants and animals associated with this habitat survive. Road verges represent a vital opportunity to link the few remaining patches of limestone grassland across the landscape. A well cared for network of verges will act as green corridors that help plants and animals move as they need to in the face of climate change and disturbance."
Notes to Editors
For information on how to apply for funding from SITA Trust call (01454) 262910 or click on www.sitatrust.org.uk
1. SITA Trust
a) SITA Trust was set up in 1997 and runs three funding programmes:
* Enhancing Communities – funding community improvement projects around qualifying waste management sites owned by SITA UK.
* Enriching Nature – funding biodiversity conservation projects within the vicinity of landfill sites in England.
* GreenPrints – funding environmental volunteering opportunities for young people aged 16-25
b) In 2007 SITA Trust donated over £7.5 million nationwide through the Landfill Communities Fund.
c) By end of 2008 SITA Trust had funded over 2000 projects with a combined value of more than £66 million.
For media enquiries about SITA Trust please contact Jools Mackin, Communications Manager on 01454 262940 mobile 07870 253048 or email email@example.com
2. The Landfill Communities Fund
* Landfill tax was introduced in 1996 to encourage more sustainable ways of managing waste.
* The landfill tax legislation also brought about the Landfill Communities Fund. This scheme allows landfill operators to voluntarily donate 6% of their landfill tax liability to environmental improvement projects.
* The Landfill Communities Fund is independently regulated on behalf of HM Government’s Revenue & Customs by ENTRUST.
SITA Trust, The Barn, Brinkmarsh Lane, Falfield, S. Gloucestershire GL12 8PT
3. The Importance of the Area
The importance of the area was recognised in the Conservation of Nature in England and Wales, Report of the Wildlife Conservation Special Committee (England and Wales). Presented by the Minister of Town and Country Planning by Command of His Majesty, July 1947. It refers to it being considered essential to conserve a representative sample of woodland and grassland on Jurassic oolite limestone. To do this it highlights a 24 square mile area entitled Scientific Area 33 Clipsham - Holywell, Lincolnshire and Rutland (important for scientific reasons).
4. The Project Partners
The partners in the Lowland Limestone (Calcareous) Grassland in Lincolnshire and Rutland Project are Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust, Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust, Natural England and Lincolnshire County Council.
5. The Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust
The Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust is dedicated to the conservation of wildlife and wild places throughout the historic county of Lincolnshire - from the Humber to the Wash. The Trust is Lincolnshire's leading nature conservation charity with over 25,000 members and around 100 nature reserves.
6. The Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust
The Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust is working for the protection and enhancement of Leicestershire and Rutland's wildlife and wild places. The Trust was founded in 1956 is a membership organisation with more than 8,000 members currently supporting the Trusts work.
Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust and Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust are part of a network of 47 Wildlife Trusts - local charities taking effective action to protect the UK's unique natural heritage, helping it to flourish again.
7. Natural England
Natural England works for people, places and nature to conserve and enhance biodiversity, landscapes and wildlife in rural, urban, coastal and marine areas. We conserve and enhance the natural environment for its intrinsic value, the wellbeing and enjoyment of people, and the economic prosperity it brings.
Natural England's Countdown 2010 Biodiversity Action Fund (BAF) supports projects carried out by Voluntary Conservation Organisations that directly contribute to the conservation of UK Biodiversity Action Plan (BAP) priority habitats and species in England. All grants have been made for three years from 2008 to the end of March 2011.
8. Countdown 2010
Countdown 2010 galvanises European Union member countries to take specific steps to save biodiversity in its realm by supporting governments and other stakeholders to achieve the 2010 biodiversity target. Countdown 2010 combines efforts to save biodiversity within a powerful network of active partners, including governments, cities and regions, and civil society organisations. National platforms assess performance, create awareness and demand action.
For more information visit the website: www.countdown2010.org
9. The Ringway Group
The Ringway Group is a company that specialises in highway maintenance.
For more information please contact
Mark Schofield, Limestone Grassland Project Officer, Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust
Tel: 01507 526667
Mobile: 07825 970930
Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust
Manor House Street
Lincolnshire LN9 5HF