Residents invited to find out more about project to restore precious wetland habitat

Residents invited to find out more about project to restore precious wetland habitat

Pool Dam residents are invited to learn more about plans to revitalise a wetland nature reserve that is at risk of drying out.
Conservationists wish to carry out work at Pool Dam Marsh Local Nature Reserve, to restore the unique habitat and create homes for a greater variety of wetland wildlife.

The proposals, which are part of a programme of environmental improvements being carried out by the ERDF Sunrise project, will be discussed at an outdoor public consultation on Tuesday September 22 at 6pm at the Harriet Higgins Community Centre.

Sunrise project manager Richard Guy explained: “Pool Dam Marshes was designated as a Local Nature Reserve around 15 years ago because it is an important place for wetland wildlife such as snipe and teal, a small duck species.
“Over the years, shrubs, trees and some non-native invasive plants have started to encroach onto the wetter areas and as a result there is a danger of the reserve drying out and us losing this special habitat.
“We’d like to talk to local residents about our plans for restoring the habitat, so they have the opportunity to ask questions and understand what the benefits of the project are.”

The plans include clearing and thinning some of the vegetation that is growing into the wetland areas, and also improving the drainage system to restore water levels for wetland wildlife.
Richard added: “It is important to restore the wetland at Pool Dam Marsh as some areas of the UK have lost over 90 per cent of this increasingly rare habitat. The project will also make a contribution towards tackling the impacts of climate change, as marshland can store carbon for centuries, in addition to cleaning water naturally and reducing flood risk downstream.”

The scheme is being delivered by Staffordshire Wildlife Trust with support from Newcastle Borough Council, as a component of the ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) SUNRISE Project, which is led by Stoke-on-Trent City Council.

The consultation event is being managed to comply with current Government Covid-19 guidelines. If you are not able to attend the consultation but would still like to learn about the project you can contact Richard Guy, SUNRISE Project Manager by email at r.guy@staffs-wildlife.org.uk or call 01889 880100 and leave a message.

Editor’s Notes

European Regional Development Fund
The project has received £2.1m of funding from the England European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020. The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (and in London the intermediate body Greater London Authority) is the Managing Authority for European Regional Development Fund. Established by the European Union, the European Regional Development Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations. For more information visit https://www.gov.uk/european-growth-funding.
Staffordshire Wildlife Trust, a registered charity, is the leading nature conservation body in the County. It protects and enhances our wildlife and wild places and promotes involvement, enjoyment and understanding of the natural world. With the support of over 15,000 members, it manages 30 sites covering over 4,018 acres including sites of international, European and national importance. As part of The Wildlife Trusts, the Trust is the local face of the largest organisation in the UK concerned with the conservation of all forms of wildlife.