Charity launches 10-year project to rescue forgotten wildlife site in Diss

River Waveney Trust volunteers help to renovate a small park off Sawmills road, Diss.
VoLunteer Pet

River Waveney Trust volunteers help to renovate a small park off Sawmills road, Diss. VoLunteer Pete Cannon is pictured helping to clear the area. Picture: NICK BUTCHER - Credit: Nick Butcher

A forgotten wildlife site is to be returned its former glory thanks to a new charity project.

River Waveney Trust volunteers help to renovate a small park off Sawmills road, Diss. Picture: NICK

River Waveney Trust volunteers help to renovate a small park off Sawmills road, Diss. Picture: NICK BUTCHER - Credit: Nick Butcher

Frenze Beck in Diss is a small park created in 2003.

However in the last six years, the site has gone uncared for.

As a result it has become overgrown, with boardwalks which have rotted and become inaccessible to the public.

But having become aware of the area in 2015, the River Waveney Trust (RWT) is beginning a 10-year project to conserve the area so that it can once again be enjoyed by nature lovers far and wide.

River Waveney Trust volunteers help to renovate a small park off Sawmills road, Diss.
Vounteer Pete

River Waveney Trust volunteers help to renovate a small park off Sawmills road, Diss. Vounteer Pete Cannon is pictured helping to clear the area. Picture: NICK BUTCHER - Credit: Nick Butcher


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Geoff Doggett, founder of the RWT - a voluntary group which was established in 2012 and has more than 800 members - said: 'To me the reason for doing this is that Diss is a rather disparate town.

'All the new developments are taking place down here round Sawmill Road.

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There are probably 500 people living here who just weren't here before six or seven years ago.

'They all need places to come for walks, dog walking - we want to give them green space somewhere to come and enjoy.

River Waveney Trust volunteers help to renovate a small park off Sawmills road, Diss. Volunteer's Bi

River Waveney Trust volunteers help to renovate a small park off Sawmills road, Diss. Volunteer's Billy Turner and Chris Lewis moving wood chippings. Picture: NICK BUTCHER - Credit: Nick Butcher

'We've got plans. It's an important site for Diss - our ambition is to turn the area into a wildlife site that is fully accessible.'

While South Norfolk Council still owns the site, RWT is negotiating to obtain a 50-year lease so it can manage the site for years to come.

In 2015 the RWT received £10,000 from the Tesco Bags for Help Scheme, which will help kick-start work on the site.

However, much of the labour will come from volunteers.

Volunteer's Billy Turner and Chris Lewis moving wood chippings.
Volunteer Chris Lewis on the newly

Volunteer's Billy Turner and Chris Lewis moving wood chippings. Volunteer Chris Lewis on the newly-cleared pathway. Picture: NICK BUTCHER - Credit: Nick Butcher

'We need volunteers now particularly up the end of March because in April you have to stop work so not to disturb the birds,' Mr Doggett said.

Work has already begun and volunteers will be working at the site every Monday, Wednesday and Friday until April when, due to nesting birds, work will have to cease.

Those who are interested in volunteering should contact c.h.lewis@btconnect.com

Have you got a Diss story? Contact Diss reporter Sabrina Johnson on 01379 651153 or email sabrina.johnson@archant.co.uk

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