THE FUTURE of a Nottingham beauty spot supported by Sir David Attenborough now looks secure after Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust raised more than £1million in just ten weeks.
WATCH: A summary of the Attenborough Nature Reserve appeal.
Attenborough Nature Reserve, a favourite of bird watchers and dog walkers, had previously been owned by aggregates company CEMEX UK as a quarry site with Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust managing the disused areas.
Three months ago the charity launched the Lifeline Appeal backed by Sir David Attenborough to raise one million pounds to buy the site and protect it for future generations.
Sir #DavidAttenborough has an important message! 👇
He is backing our efforts to buy and care for Attenborough Nature Reserve
— Notts Wildlife Trust (@Nottswildlife) December 1, 2019
Sir David Attenborough opened the centre in 1966. He described the reserve, which welcomes hundreds of thousands of visitors a year, as a “symbol of hope in a challenging world.”
Chief executive of Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust Paul Wilkinson said the broadcaster’s support had been a big help.
“It was amazing to have the backing of the voice of the natural world… his endorsement was the stardust that really kicked off the campaign,” he said.
“It’s just such a special place, that we had to get it”
Elliott Kean, Engagement Officer, Attenborough Nature Reserve
The appeal was boosted by £750,000 from a Biffa Award Grant and £75,000 from Broxtowe Borough Council, bringing the final total to £1,113,000.
Thousands of individual donations also helped the trust reach its target with engagement officer for Attenborough Elliott Kean thanking the community for their support.
“We’ve had over four thousand individuals who have contributed, and it really does add up… It’s just such a special place that we had to get it really. We put in everything we got and it’s paid off,” he said.
The fundraiser is still open whilst the purchase goes through as Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust plans improvements and maintenance to enrich the reserve for visitors and wildlife alike.
WATCH: We spoke to walkers and birdwatchers about the news that the reserve was saved.
Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust Chief Executive Paul Wilkinson said, “We really want to develop the wildlife on site to increase the amount of habitats available for a whole range of species.”
He added, “We also want to develop the infrastructure on the site, the signage, the footpaths and really enhance the building that is iconic of this site to make it an even more wonderful place to visit and enjoy.”
More information on the Attenborough Nature Reserve is available on their website.