BBC Springwatch to return to Norfolk beauty spot

Pensthorpe Natural Park (photo: Marcus Harpur)

Pensthorpe Natural Park, near Fakenham, will feature in the latest series of BBC’s Springwatch tonight. - Credit: Picture: Marcus Harpur

A Norfolk nature reserve is set to appear on the BBC's Springwatch.

Pensthorpe Natural Park, near Fakenham, will feature in the latest series of BBC’s Springwatch on Thursday night. The broadcast on BBC2 will take place on June 10 at 8pm.

Pensthorpe previously hosted the much-loved show between 2008 and 2010.

The program will feature the conservation work the trust has been undertaking

The program will feature the conservation work the trust has been undertaking. This will include the long-term project with corncrakes, which has been running since 2015 - Credit: Roger Tidman

Presenter Megan McCubbin visited the nature reserve to interview Chrissie Kelley, head of species management, about the conservation work the trust has been undertaking.

She described the site's long-term project with corncrakes, which has been running since 2015 in the Wensum Valley.


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Due to habitat loss and agricultural intensification, the corncrake has suffered a dramatic decline in numbers and is currently red-listed in the UK for urgent conservation action.

For more than five years, Pensthorpe Conservation Trust has been striving to restore this lost species to Norfolk’s Wensum Valley.

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The trials then expanded to incorporate the Wensum Valley with reports of wild-bred birds returning and breeding in East Anglia for the first time in over 50 years.

Chrissie Kelley, Head of Species Management at Pensthorpe at the dedicated Flamingo area of Pensthor

Chrissie Kelley, Head of Species Management at Pensthorpe - Credit: Archant

The trial, led by the trust, ended last year with corncrakes from both release trials returning to the Ouse Washes after migrating to sub-Saharan Africa; this year, the chicks hatched from the breeding programme will be released at a new site at Welney.

Ms Kelly said: “One of our main roles at the trust is to conserve species, and we’re so pleased we are able to play a part in the protection of both the corncrake and curlew.

“It's vital that we make a change now before it is too late, as these species of birds have experienced a huge decline in numbers over recent years.

The program will feature the conservation work the trust has been undertaking.

The program will feature the conservation work the trust has been undertaking. This will include the long-term project with corncrakes, which has been running since 2015 - Credit: Martin Hayward-Smith

“We want to inspire and educate adults so they can become role models for the younger generation, and to become more aware of nature and how we can all play our part to preserve it.

“We’re so glad we’ve been given a chance to showcase our work on Springwatch, which is enjoyed by so many nature lovers across the UK.”

Every visit to Pensthorpe supports the trust – a portion of the admission fee goes directly into various conservation projects.

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