Summer Leys Nature Reserve
Much needed restoration works have been completed at Summer Leys Nature Reserve, Northamptonshire, courtesy of a substantial £22,346 grant from local construction business Mick George Ltd.
Summer Leys is an important wetland in the Nene Valley, designated as an SSSI for its migrant and wintering wildfowl and waders. The reserve comprises open water, islands, reedbeds, willows and grassland, but despite all of the locations beauty, the destination was in severe need of some TLC. after years of neglect.
The funding has permitted a series of new amenities to be installed aimed at enhancing visitor experience. These include; new access pathways, gates, interpretation signage, and general ‘Greenland and Scrub’ management, as well as a feeding station and nesting dock fencing for the Sandmartins that reside at Summer Leys.
The enhancements form part of a 10-year vision from those that manage the facility, which state that by 2024 the reserve will be; managed primarily for its wildlife value, ensure good access for people with disabilities, provide public access along Rights of Way and permissive paths, provide information about the site, and improve engagement with visitors.
The initiative aforementioned, has certainly delivered each of the objectives set-out, amongst others.
Andrew Hunter, Grants Fundraiser at The Wildlife Trust BCN Limited said: ‘’The grant from Mick George Ltd has enabled us to vastly improve the visitor experience at Summer Leys Nature Reserve. The reserve is one of our best for bird watching, and that has only been enhanced by the changes which now brings birds closer to visitors for photography opportunities. Habitat management work has also improved the conditions for a variety of wildlife.’’
Jon Stump, Finance Director at Mick George Ltd commented: ‘’Over the years we have supported various conservation projects alongside numerous charitable organisations. The feedback has always been very positive and I’m sure that will be replicated in this instance.’’