Nothing says I love you at Christmas like gifting a piece of the Broads

Carlton Marshes Nature Reserve.Picture: James Bass

Carlton Marshes Nature Reserve.Picture: James Bass - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2013

It's that time of the year when shoppers start getting frantic as they stock up on presents to put under the tree.

Now Suffolk Wildlife Trust is offering people a unique Christmas present opportunity.

The Trust is offering people the chance to 'buy' a piece of the Suffolk Broads as part of their campaign to create a giant 1,000 acre nature reserve in the north of the county.

Everyone who buys a gift of land will receive a personalised e-certificate.

The campaign to raise enough money to buy pieces of land on either side of their existing reserve at Carlton and Oulton Marshes has raised £312,387 towards the £1 million needed, since the appeal first began in late October.

The appeal was launched after the Heritage Lottery Fund approved the Trust's initial plans for land purchase and has awarded the Trust a development grant of £246,300.

Matt Gooch, the Trust's Broads Warden, said: 'By gifting a piece of land to someone special – whether it is 1m2 or 500m2 – people will be able to share their excitement, while also contributing to a breath-taking landscape-scale reserve that will protect nature for generations.

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'It is the gift that keeps on giving.'

He said the trust had been overwhelmed by the campaign's success. He said: 'We have been absolutely amazed by the level of support that our appeal has received so far. The idea of having wildness as far as the eye can see has clearly captured people's imaginations.'

He said the number of donations and messages of support from those beyond Suffolk, as well as from the county, showed how important the preservation of the Broads is for many people.

With the land purchase the Trust hope to create a mix of wet habitats and more than 150 acres of marsh, fen meadow and shallow pools.

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