£25,000 secured for Nature reserves

Extra funding to improve Borough’s nature reserves

Merton’s Leisure Services has secured £25,000 to carry out improvements to Local Nature Reserves.

The investment has come from Wildspace, English Nature’s Grant Scheme for Local Nature Reserves, which aims to involve local communities in the improvement, care and enjoyment of the local environment.

Wildspace gives money towards projects that help local people take action for wildlife, discover and learn about wildlife on their doorstep and make Local Nature Reserves safe, accessible places everyone can enjoy

The projects to benefit from the funding are:

· Habitat restoration and enhancements works to the ponds involving desilting and clearance of shading woody vegetation, clay puddling, pond re-lining and the removal of invasive vegetation.

· Restore parcels of the regionally important acidic grassland habitat.

· Develop pedestrian access through path drainage improvements, helping to keep walkers on the correct path and protecting rare plant habitat. This will enable local schools to use sites as outdoor classrooms for environmental education.

Councillor Linda Kirby, Cabinet Member for Environmental Quality, said: “These initiatives will have a lasting effect on the community’s enjoyment of our wonderful wildlife. We encourage the whole community to take advantage of the valuable nature reserves in Merton.”