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Natural Networks continue to support county’s biodiversity improvement

Improved footways and soil space in an area of Badsey, thanks to Natural Networks. Published Wednesday, 9th March 2022

Over 140 organisations have received support and advice from the Natural Networks programme since its launch two and a half years ago.

Over 140 organisations have received support and advice from the Natural Networks programme since its launch two and a half years ago.

45 organisations have received grant funding from the project so far with nearly £350,000 being given out to help improve biodiversity.

The project still has access to £450,000 of grant money to continue improving biodiversity projects.

One organisation that has really benefitted from the project is Badsey and Aldington Parish Council.

They have received £23,000 in funding through a European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) grant from the Natural Networks programme.

The money has allowed them to introduce the following to their land:

  • A Planting Scheme
  • Information Boards  
  • Excavation of ponds
  • Wildflowers for approx 3 acres
  • Regular Maintenance

Andrea from Badsey and Aldington Parish Council, has been full of praise for the impact the grant money has had on her local parish.

She said: “We were lucky enough to have a volunteer to help design the planting but it was when Natural Networks came on board that the project became a reality and we fully realised what could be achieved for our community and for the area around us. Large numbers of trees and shrubs are already in place, and we are expecting our fruit trees to be planted in the next couple of weeks. The traditional wildflower meadows will follow, the ponds are dug and will be planted in early April to complete that area.  This will be a community facility of huge significance for the foreseeable future. We are proud to be giving something back to the environment, we are pleased to say that we have learned so much along the way which we hope to pass on to all of the parish.”

“Funding from Natural Networks has allowed us to be much more ambitious in our planting, providing pond habitats as well as woodland and meadow where once there was only rough grazing land. Natural Networks’ expert advice is helping us to create a wildlife-friendly area for the enjoyment of all, and Council ownership will, of course, ensure its continued existence. We would unhesitatingly recommend contacting Natural Networks for similar projects.” 

“Apart from the obvious funding assistance, which allows much more extensive works, the advice has been invaluable.  We have been able to produce a much more interesting facility with the assistance of Natural Networks than would ever have been the case otherwise.”

Councillor Tony Miller, Cabinet Member for the Environment, said: “It’s really heartwarming to hear stories like Andrea’s and to hear how positively the National Networks scheme has benefitted this local area. The extension of the programme into 2023 will really allow us to build on the fantastic work we have done in recent years with our county’s wonderful natural habitats.  I’m really looking forward to seeing how the programme will continue to help things to develop further and allow us to keep welcoming wildlife to Worcestershire for many years to come.”

Overall, thanks to the Natural Networks project, over 42 hectares of land across Worcestershire, have seen improvements made.

The programme has been extended until June 2023.

For anyone wishing to find out how we can support their organisation in gaining a grant, a free webinar event on the 30th March between 6.30pm-8.30pm.

To book your place, please visit the Eventbrite webpage for the Natural Networks webinar.