When Rowan visits Sydenham Hill Wood, every puddle, tree and trail is part of the adventure. And his dad quite likes playing along too. Outdoor play is more than it has ever been – the roaming distance that children play from their home has shrunk by 90% in 30 years[i].
A bit of wild time helps young children learn and grow naturally (and it’s also good for the young at heart).
Duncan helps to manage the pockets of peatland at Bell Crag Flow in Northumberland. The ancient landscapes that he works on are around 10,000 years old. These sites are great for wildlife but they also hold and filter rainfall, protect against flooding on the River Tyne and store carbon, too. 70% of our drinking water comes from wild places in our upland water catchments – places like moors, mountains and peat bogs[i].
Wild places provide us with natural taps, sponges and filters.
Ann and Alan work with local schools and community groups to develop growing projects on the Manchester Mosslands. By cultivating and planting specialist bog plants they are stitching together a colourful patchwork quilt of mosses, which not only helps to bring the local community together, but helps to store carbon and water too.
Wild places bring communities together so you can meet your neighbours, whatever species they are.
Find your wild life with the Wildlife Trust for Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside www.lancswt.org.uk.
Lancashire Wildlife Trust is working with Moorfield Primary school in Irlam to deliver both indoor and outdoor education on the mossland habitat. This includes the history of the area, and the changing relationship that people in the community have had with the landscape around them.
Wild places help children understand the world around them.
Romers Wood, Herefordshire
Some meadows and woods are just perfect for Bryn to play hide and seek. We want to help everyone discover nature’s playground.
30 years ago, if Jeremy had fallen in the river then he’d have been more worried about being poisoned than drowned! A 1980s trawl survey found just one fish in the Billingham reach of the Tees, and that was a diseased flounder. Things didn’t start improving until an EU directive about pollution control in urban waste water was implemented in the UK. Jeremy can now watch cormorants and seals feeding on salmon and sea trout in this stretch of the river.
EU legislation has made sure we cleaned up our rivers, making them healthier for wildlife and people.
Richard used to work in the docks across the water from Thurrock Thameside Nature Park. Since his wife died, he likes to get away from the hustle and bustle, coming out with his dog to escape and remember.
Wild places give us space and time for memory and reflection.
Amelie and Evie know that the best thing about building sand castles is the knocking down. Add a little wild to your Suffolk beachlife this summer – fun for families up and down the coast and all over the county.
Wild places let our imaginations (and feet!) run wild.
I’m lucky to live in the beautiful countryside of North Yorkshire. Ever since I was very little, even before I could walk as Dad would carry me in a back pack, I’ve been out and about with mum and dad looking at nature and learning about it.
I’m fascinated by nature and all the things I see, from mini-beasts to mammals, from lichens to birds. I explore lots of great places and find so many interesting things everytime I go out. To help me learn more about nature I started photographing my nature hunts then reading and writing all about them in my blog. It helps me to learn and to share my love of nature. I’ve shared it with friends at school and started to get them interested too. through doing this I’ve also met lots of great people that also love nature.
Ruaridh loves playing in the woods – here everything can be anything and he can let his imagination run wild. Sadly less than 10% of children ever play in natural areas, compared to 40% of today’s adults who did so as children[i].
Outdoors in nature, children’s imaginations (and their feet) can run wild.
[i] Louv, R. (2005) Last child in the woods: Saving our children from nature-deficit disorder. Algonquin Books, North Carolina.
Bird, W. (2007) Natural Thinking. Investigating the links between the Natural Environment, Biodiversity and Mental Health. A report for the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, Bedfordshire.
My Secret Garden
Rowan loves the fresh smell and sight of the buttercups in the wildflower meadow at Besthorpe. It’s a special place because there are precious few spots like this where she can spend time among a sea of flowers, playing hide and seek or creating dens in the long grasses with her sisters.
Natural playgrounds are fun to share with everyone.
Tim has volunteered at Astley Moss for five years, helping to increase the water levels on the bogs back to their historic healthy levels. He especially loves watching the birds return to this restored landscape.
Wild places collect and store carbon, lessening the impacts of climate change.
Find your wild life with the Wildlife Trust for Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside www.lancswt.org.uk
From creating new hedgerows on a farm, to helping to inspire the next generation of nature lovers, Andy is building the skills, confidence and experience as a Biodiversity Trainee that will set him on the path to a career working with wildlife.
Jessie loves to inspire the next generation to learn about the wildlife around them. Every day she can see children growing to love and respect their natural environment.
Your children can benefit from Jessie’s passion for her work too.
Legacies provide lasting contributions to wildlife for future generations to enjoy.