Nature is thriving in John Clare Countryside!

The Langdyke Countryside Trust, which has a leading role in nature recovery in John Clare Countryside near Peterborough, reports a surge in interest from local residents and volunteers in its recently published 2020 Annual Review.

Despite covid, during 2020 the charity adapted to the change in circumstances and transferred much activity online, attracting speakers such as Harriet Mead, Carry Akroyd, Brian Eversham and Frances Pryor, who both helped to provide social connection at a time of social isolation, and to promote the work of the trust and the value of connecting with nature.

The richness of the trust’s reserves was amply reflected in the appearance of a new colony of the very scarce Man orchid and of several new invertebrate species at Swaddywell Pit, including a wonderful Clifden Nonpareil moth in September. Vergette Wood Meadow too produced new sightings of key species such as four-spotted moth and marbled white butterfly.

During the summer and early autumn, management plans for the trust’s reserves were refreshed, with a new framework put in place for working with contractors to deliver the major tasks on each reserve. And in July 2020 Peterborough City Council unanimously endorsed the trust’s vision.

Looking ahead over the next five years, the trust aspires to: double its membership; enhance existing reserves including their contribution to the wider landscape; significantly increase the area of land it manages for nature; drive forward the John Clare Countryside project; and to continue to engage and inspire its members through nature, the poetry of John Clare, art and photography.

A full copy of the report can be found on the Langdyke Countryside Trust’s website here.