Derbyshire nature reserve projects receive over £12,500 from Severn Trent Community Fund 

16th August 2023

Grants totalling £12,531 have been made to two projects in Derbyshire by the Severn Trent Community Fund, for improvements to reserves in their communities. 

A grant of £9,996 has been made to the Elvaston Castle & Gardens Trust (ECGT) for creation of a nature trail and improvements to a local nature reserve within the historic castle grounds. 

The Elvaston Castle & Country Park was established in 1989 and covers an area of 13.5 hectares, with a variety of native and non-native woodland and wetland habitats. The area has been neglected since Covid and is unused by the majority of the 350,000 visitors to the Estate each year. 

This project aims to increase footfall to the LNR through new signage and by creating a new nature trail with clear and established pathways, so that once again it is an inviting and accessible area.  

Long Eaton Natural History Society Wildlife Group (LENS) has received £2,525 for the installation of Friendship Benches at Orchid Wood Lane Nature Reserve. 

The group, which was formed in 1978, provides a series of talks, walks and wildlife-based activities, and is an active part of the community. The group hopes that the benches – which are positioned close enough together for people to sit and chat comfortably – will help to spark conversations, ultimately helping to alleviate depression and anxiety and enhancing overall wellbeing.

The benches will also accommodate persons with limited mobility, provide seating for dog walkers, and a place for people to relax and commune with nature. 

Sue Heyes, Severn Trent Community Fund Officer, said: “Having access to beautiful outdoor spaces such as these nature reserves have got proven benefits for peoples’ wellbeing and mental health, and we are really pleased that they have been chosen to receive this funding. 

“We are always looking for more local projects in the regions in which we work which would benefit from grant funding and would encourage anyone who may be applicable to get in touch.” 

For more information on the Severn Trent Community Fund and to find out how to make an application visit and search for Community Fund. 

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