Norfolk conservation groups get £1.5m boost from Green Recovery Fund
- Credit: Antony Kelly
Canoe and paddle access to more than 22 miles of waterways in Norfolk is set to be improved thanks to funding from the government's Green Recovery Challenge Fund.
The River Waveney Trust’s ‘Canoe Access and Biodiversity’ project is one of several schemes in Norfolk and Waveney to receive a slice of more than £1.5m.
The Green Recovery Challenge Fund was developed by Defra to help restore habitats, tackle climate change and connect people with nature.
In Norfolk, The RWT, Norfolk Wildlife Trust (NWT), British Trust for Ornithology, Norfolk Coast Partnership, Norfolk Coast (AONB) Partnership and the Zoological Society of East Anglia (Banham Zoo) have all received funding.
The grants range in size from £68,100 to the NWT to £885,400 to the Norfolk Coast (AONB) Partnership and will be used to help restore chalk rivers, youth engagement and to support a recovery programme for the endangered white-clawed crayfish.
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The six projects are among 90 across the country to have received grants to accelerate the implementation of nature-based projects, from new ‘insect pathways’ to tree planting projects in deprived urban areas.
The RWT will use its grant of £68,100 to improve 22.5 miles of public canoe and paddle access on the River Waveney, which is one of only 12 rivers in the UK with a public access arrangement.
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Biodiversity will also be enhanced along the river by restoring the channel and planting trees to create river corridors and buffers.
Martha Meek, RWT development manager, said the grant was "fantastic news" for the Trust.
She said: "We are a small organisation and this will make a huge difference to what we can achieve. We are delighted to have received funding for a project that has multiple benefits to so many river users and our local environment. Our thanks go to the Green Recovery Challenge Fund for choosing our project and we very much look forward to recruiting our third member of staff.”
Rebecca Pow, the environment minister said: "The diverse and ambitious projects being awarded funding today will help environmental organisations employ more people to work on tree-planting, nature restoration and crucially, help more of the public to access and enjoy the outdoors."