Earth Trust urgent appeal to protect green spaces
Earth Trust looks after many of the green spaces that we all know and love and have enjoyed more than ever during the COVID19 pandemic. Places like the landmark Wittenham Clumps with its farmland, woodland, wetlands and wildflower meadows and Thrupp Lake, a community green space that is a quiet haven for people and wildlife.
Visitor numbers have dramatically increased but the charity has reduced resources to look after them. Earth Trust is launching a fundraising appeal as public support is urgently required for the essential work needed to protect and restore the green spaces that we love and benefit from.
As more of us have been out discovering these green oases, the charity says that looking after them has become an increasingly challenging task. Jayne Manley, CEO says: “At the peak of the pandemic, 80% of Earth Trust staff were furloughed and all volunteer groups suspended. Critically, our funds have been vastly depleted in recent months as the source of our income fundraising events, hire of our facilities for weddings and paid visits had to be cancelled. What funding remains is limited and this has impacted on our ability to bring staff back from furlough. Increased visitor numbers and limited capacity have placed our green spaces under considerable strain. We are appealing for the public’s help and support to protect them and keep them open and accessible for everyone’s to enjoy.”
High quality, well managed green spaces deliver a multitude of benefits. For people, they provide healthy physical spaces to exercise, mental health relief, communal areas for socially distanced interaction and cleaner air. For the environment, they store carbon, support temperature regulation, help with flood alleviation and host critical biodiversity. Ian Nutt, Director of Partnerships and Programmes, at Earth Trust says: “Managing green spaces is a bit like looking after your house, garden, bike or car: they don’t simply look after themselves and remain in good condition. It takes time, money, skills, knowledge and a huge amount of care.” Earth Trust uses techniques that minimise negative impacts on the land, maximise biodiversity and actively support environmental issues. All while offering well maintained, interactive spaces for us all to explore and enjoy.
Jayne added: “We know how much our green spaces mean to people, and that they have provided much needed respite for so many over the last few months. We know that when we manage green spaces well, they are natural solutions and are fundamental to the country’s recovery. We urgently need to safeguard green spaces. So, we are asking the public to show that you love and want to look after our green spaces by making a donation today.”