Norfolk beauty spot set to benefit from multi-million wildlife campaign

Norfolk Wildlife Trust (NWT) is appealing for help to purchase a series of arable fields and seminat

Thompson Common and the surrounding habitat is to benefit from a multi-million pound investment - Credit: Jim Foster ARC/NWT

A Norfolk beauty spot is set to benefit from a multi-million pound campaign aimed at boosting the nation's wildlife. 

Thompson Common, along with 140 surrounding acres of land, is one of 10 sites selected for funding by The Wildlife Trusts coalition.

Norfolk Wildlife Trust (NWT) is appealing for help to purchase a series of arable fields and seminat

Thompson Common and the surrounding habitat is to benefit from a multi-million pound investment - Credit: Mike Page/NWT

Money allocated to the project will be spent on reviving ghost "pingo" ponds, as well as expanding heathland across arable fields and woodland.

Pingo ponds formed at the end of the last Ice Age and have been left almost untouched ever since. 

The Brecks, in which Thompson is located, has the highest density of pingo ponds anywhere in the UK.  


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It is hoped efforts to revitalise the wider habitat - to be led by Norfolk Wildlife Trust - will ultimately support rare wildlife including the northern pool frog. 

The Wildlife Trusts, made up of 46 local trusts across the country, has already raised almost £8m since launching an initiative to drive the recovery of nature across 30pc of land by 2030.

Norfolk Wildlife Trust (NWT) is appealing for help to purchase a series of arable fields and seminat

Thompson Common and the surrounding habitat is to benefit from a multi-million pound investment - Credit: Richard Osbourne/NWT

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Members of the public have donated around £900,000 since the scheme was unveiled six months ago. 

And, it has earned the backing of one of the natural world's most respected and recognisable voices - veteran broadcaster and naturalist, Sir David Attenborough. 

He said nature was "capable of extraordinary recovery" - if given the chance.

"We are facing a global extinction crisis which has implications for every one of us," warned Sir David.

"It's tempting to assume that the loss of wildlife and wild places is a problem that's happening on the other side of the world.

Releasing the frogs is Jim Foster. Picture: Ian Burt

Thompson Common and the surrounding habitat is to benefit from a multi-million pound investment - Credit: Archant

"The truth is that the UK is one of the most nature-depleted countries on the planet and the situation is getting worse.

"The Wildlife Trusts' campaign offers us the vision and level of ambition that is urgently needed to reverse the loss of nature, and so improve all our lives."

Craig Bennett, chief executive of the Wildlife Trusts, added: "Just protecting the nature we have left is not enough; we need to put nature into recovery, and to do so at scale and with urgency.

"We need to transform nature-poor areas into new nature-rich places and change the way we think about land - looking for opportunities to help nature outside traditional nature reserves."

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