Worcestershire habitat restoration grant programme increased to cover 70 per cent of project costs - The Evesham Observer

Worcestershire habitat restoration grant programme increased to cover 70 per cent of project costs

Evesham Editorial 12th Jan, 2024   0

A COUNTY-WIDE wildlife restoration grant has now increased its funding to cover 70 per cent of the costs of applications from public or voluntary sector organisations.

The Natural Networks grants, available to wildlife and habitat restoration projects, will now be able to offer more funds.

Over 200 organisations have already received support and advice from the Natural Networks Programme, since it launched nearly five years ago. Grants of £1000 to £15,000 are still available.

To date, £700,000 (including from the previous European Regional Development Fund Programme) has been given out to projects to help improve biodiversity.

Funding is still available before the completion of the project on March 31, 2025.

Coun Richard Morris, Worcestershire County Council’s cabinet member for environment, said:

“The funding available as part of this programme has already gone a long way to helping organisations make improvements to the county’s biodiversity.

“There’s still some funding available to be accessed over the next few months and what’s even better, you can now get more even more of a contribution towards the total cost of the works.

“No matter how big or small your project, get in touch, the team is keen to work with you and help you apply for a grant.”

The Natural Networks team are on hand to help successful applications every step of the process, from writing specifications and sourcing quotes, to creating management plans and filling out the application form and appendices.

The team will be able to discuss potential plans and make recommendations on how maintaining and improving sites

Recommendations can include wetland creation, meadow creation, and orchard planting.

So far, the programme has enabled over 71,000 bulbs and nearly 26,000 trees to be planted. More than 4km of hedges has been established, 50 ponds created and over 600 bird/bat boxes have been installed.

Public or voluntary sector organisations will be required to match fund at least 30 per cent of the project. Businesses needing to match fund at least 50 per cent of the total cost of the project.

Natural Networks is part funded by the UK Shared Prosperity Fund and the Forestry Commission. It is delivered in partnership between Worcestershire County Council and Worcestershire Wildlife Trust.

Visit www.worcestershire.gov.uk/naturalnetworks for more information.

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