Blackdown Hills Force for Nature project hailed a success

This is The West Country: The Neroche Conservation Volunteers at the Somerset Wildlife Trust's nature reserve at Ruggin, near West Buckland. The Neroche Conservation Volunteers at the Somerset Wildlife Trust's nature reserve at Ruggin, near West Buckland.

ORGANISERS of a project aimed at increasing activity in the Blackdown Hills are celebrating the success of the two-year project which enabled 90 volunteering days to be held in beautiful countryside locations across the area.

The ‘Force for Nature’ project, led by the Blackdown Hills Trust, encouraged people in Wellington, Taunton and on the hills themselves to come forward to help conserve the unique landscape and its wildlife.

Nearly 300 people took part in additional ‘Discovery Days’ organised through the project which have helped them find out something more about the landscape, from having a go at landscape painting to learning how to identify wildflowers and butterflies, and helping to control invasive Himalayan balsam.

Linda Bennett, of the Blackdown Hills AONB, said: “Volunteering is a great way of enjoying our protected landscape and contributing to its care.

“The Blackdown Hills AONB partnership is looking forward to providing more opportunities for local people to volunteer through forthcoming projects.”

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