Broads community projects encouraged to bid for grant funding

Strumpshaw Fen reserve.Picture by SIMON FINLAY.

Strumpshaw Fen reserve.Picture by SIMON FINLAY. - Credit: Archant Norfolk

Projects to safeguard the Broads for future generations could be given a helping hand from grants generated by visitor donations.

Love the Broads has provided a grant which has funded a ‘Welcome and Education sign’ for Thurne wind

Love the Broads has provided a grant which has funded a ‘Welcome and Education sign’ for Thurne windmill. This is the first time that the heritage building has had any external information for visitors. Pictured from left Peter Howe (Trustee of the Broads Trust), Keith Bacon (Trustee of the Broads Trust), Bryan Read (Trustee of the Broads Trust) and Debra Nicholson (Owner of Thurne windmill).Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Run by the Broads Trust, the Love the Broads initiative is encouraging wildlife, environmental and educational projects on the region's network of waterways to vie for a slice of funding.

Over the last three years, the charitable trust has given away almost £20,000, with £7,000 donated to four initiatives last year.

The cash is raised through donations from visitors to the Broads, residents and tourism businesses.

Visitor boat moorings to access South Walsham, habitat improvements at Carlton and Oulton Marshes, barn owl boxes and an information board at Thurne Windmill are among the initiatives to have benefitted since 2013.


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Lynne Finnigan, development officer for Love the Broads, said: 'This money is for projects that make a difference to the Broads and protect their future. We have helped some brilliant schemes in the past and we are welcoming applications for this year.'

Last year, the RSPB received £1,500 for its nature explorers project at Strumpshaw Fen, which saw a covered area built to enable schools and youth groups to explore and learn about the area regardless of the weather.

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Jo Hand, project manager, said: 'We are so excited to have a wonderful new base camp to run our education sessions and other events from. This will make all the difference to our education offer and will allow us to welcome a much broader range of groups.'

Jane Warren, RSPB fundraiser, said the charity was 'very grateful' for the support of the project and encouraged similar groups to get in touch, describing the application process as 'very straightforward'.

While Love the Broads did not want to put an exact figure on the funds available this year, they welcome small grant applications which in the past have ranged from about £700 to £1,500.

Applications should be made by the end of June, with successful applications notified in August 2016.

Love the Broads was set up by the Norfolk and Suffolk Broads Charitable Trust - now better known as the Broads Trust - and the Broads Authority.

For information and an application form visit www.lovethebroads.org.uk or email lynne@lovethebroads.org.uk

Do you have a Broads story? Email lauren.cope@archant.co.uk

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