10th June 2015
Princethorpe Woodlands wins jackpot
The Princethorpe Woodlands Living Landscape project is now
one step closer to its goal of restoring this ancient wooded
landscape connected by hedgerows, grasslands, trees and ponds
and full of historical sites to one rich in wildlife and accessible to
all, thanks to development funding of £116,900 from the
Heritage Lottery Fund.
The 618 ha area has 20 woodlands and has been described as
the most important cluster of ancient woodlands in Warwickshire.
However many of the woodlands and interconnecting habitats are
unmanaged and of poor quality, reducing their value as wildlife habitat and as places to visit.
This initial grant will allow detailed surveys of the area to be carried out as well as extensive community consultation, informing detailed delivery plans which should allow the partnership to secure an additional £1 M to deliver the project over four years. The partnership includes Butterfly Conservation, Coombe Country Park, Coventry City Council, Friends of Brandon Wood, Rugby Borough Council, Warwick District Council and Warwickshire County Council, and is led by Warwickshire Wildlife Trust.
Reyahn King, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund West Midlands, said: “This project covers an area rich in wildlife habitats including Warwickshire’s most precious ancient woodlands. We look forward to receiving the detailed plans for engaging communities and landowners in their conservation and management for the benefit of future generations.”
Chief Executive of lead partner Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, Ed Green, said: “We are delighted to receive this grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund which will allow us to work with our partners, local communities and local landowners to encourage local people to get involved in the ancient woodlands and historical sites around them. The project will provide a range of training and learning opportunities for local people as well as many events and activities, reconnecting people with the landscape around them and getting them involved in the restoration and enhancement of their local heritage. Woodlands, grasslands, hedgerows and ponds will be improved, improving habitats for wildlife and allowing them to move more easily from one place to the next. Physical access to sites will be improved making it easier for more people to visit and more information about the area will be produced in a range of interactive formats, allowing people to understand more about the history and importance of the area.”
Development Phase HLF funding has enabled the Princethorpe Woodlands team to develop further links with local communities, landowners and groups. We have consulted local communities, carried out trial engagement sessions with youth groups and schools, run events and trialled woodland coppice craft sessions.
Jim Langridge Associates and scheme staff carried out extensive consultation with local communities, attending Lillington Community Cafe, The Hagaard Centre in Willenhall and various other locations.
Events and activities
From children learning how to cook outdoors, to charcoal making and tree climbing, the Princethorpe Woodlands Scheme trialled many new and innovative activities to engage communities with their woodlands.
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