Suffolk Wildlife Trust receives £247,000 grant to 'bring the broads to Lowestoft'

Carlton Marshes visitor centre

Carlton Marshes visitor centre. - Credit: John Ferguson

Suffolk Wildlife Trust has received a government grant worth £247,000 to fund its Bringing the Broads to Lowestoft project.

The project aims to create habitats and restore the landscape around the Carlton Marshes nature reserve near the town, as well as extending paths to create more opportunities for locals to get close to nature.

Coinciding with the opening of a new visitor centre in June 2021, delayed from June 2020 by the pandemic, the project's investment in wetland creation, grazing and access infrastructure, aims to accelerate the transformation of the marshes into a regional nature destination.

Carlton Marshes

Carlton Marshes. - Credit: John Ferguson

The destination would see the southern Broads National Park revived and aim to allow Lowestoft to create a nature-based tourism economy, as part of its recovery from Covid.

Funding will enable a wide range of important conservation initiatives to support Broadland species including rare water plants and insects, as well as waders and overwintering birds. 

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Investment comes from £80m of the Green Recovery Challenge Fund, which will see 90 nature projects across the country awarded grants from £68,100 to £2m to create and retain over 1,000 green jobs.

Carlton Marshes

Carlton Marshes. - Credit: John Ferguson

Work will be carried out on over 600 sites from North Northumberland to the tip of Cornwall, with almost a million trees set to be planted as part of a commitment to treble tree planting rates across England.

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North East Suffolk Sites Manager, Matt Gooch, said: “This funding will enable the reserve here at Carlton Marshes to take a further step forward for wildlife by adding to the diversity of wetland habitats and will enable visitors easier access and opportunities to have a wildlife experience right on the doorstep of Lowestoft.” 

A Norfolk Hawker at Carlton Marshes.

A Norfolk Hawker at Carlton Marshes. - Credit: Gavin Durrant

Environment minister, Rebecca Pow, said: “The diverse and ambitious projects being awarded funding today will help environmental organisations employ more people to work on tree-planting, nature restoration and crucially, help more of the public to access and enjoy the outdoors. 

“Through our £80 million fund, we are on track to support over 2,500 jobs, plant almost a million trees and increase nature recovery at a huge scale across the country, which will help us deliver against our 25-year environment plan.” 

A Wigeon flock at Carlton Marshes near Lowestoft.

A Wigeon flock at Carlton Marshes near Lowestoft. - Credit: Gavin Durrant

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