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Two year project to get Cumbria buzzing not buffering

2 weeks ago 1 min read

We are excited with delivery of this pollinator project which will restore valuable habitats, improve the natural environment and help in the fight against climate change.

Conservation work to support Cumbria’s bees and other pollinators is being helped by a partnership between Cumbria Wildlife Trust and Fibrus Broadband.

The Full Fibre Broadband company is supporting the work of Cumbria Wildlife Trust with a £150,000 contribution as part of one of their environmental initiatives in the county.

The work will mean that by 2025, through working with local communities and landowners, the partnership will have helped create or restore 15 valuable sites for pollinators, ensuring that they’re managed correctly and continue to be wildlife havens long into the future.

During the two-year project, Cumbria Wildlife Trust will also run community planting days, as well as pollinator identification and training sessions. In addition, 1,500 packs of native Cumbrian wildflower seeds will be given out across the county.

The first community planting day has already taken place at Town View Fields in Kendal, where 20 volunteers joined in with planting 1,200 plugs.

One of the volunteers, Liz Wright, has lived locally for 37 years and enjoyed getting involved. “We’re hoping to get a wildflower meadow and attract more insects into the area. It’s also a good way to get to know people in the area and a nice project for us to get involved with,” she said.

Rachel Bain, environmental and sustainability specialist for Fibrus, said: “At Fibrus, we take our responsibilities to the environment very seriously.  By providing hyperfast broadband we are reducing commuting, enabling local enterprises to develop and thrive, increasing access to education and essential services, and driving sustainable changes in the way people connect, work, live and play.

“Fibrus is committed to ensuring we have environmental sustainability at the core of our business. We are excited to be supporting Cumbria Wildlife Trust with delivery of this pollinator project which will restore valuable habitats, improve the natural environment and help in the fight against climate change. As well as engaging with the local community to support their pollinator journey’’

“In Cumbria Wildlife Trust, we have the ideal partner and we look forward to working closely with them over the coming years.”

With plans to invest a staggering £700 million, Fibrus remains focused on bringing full fibre broadband to homes and businesses in remote UK towns and villages that need it most. Last year, the UK government awarded Fibrus a £108 million contract to provide up to 60,000 rural premises across Cumbria with access to next generation connectivity. This investment forms part of Project Gigabit, the UK government’s £5 billion programme to enable hard-to-reach communities across the country to access lightning-fast gigabit-capable broadband.

Tanya St.Pierre, Grassland and Pollinator Team Manager at Cumbria Wildlife Trust said: “Flower-rich grasslands were once common. Over the last 50 years the UK has lost 97 per cent of lowland meadows, partly through agricultural intensification, and only one per cent of our upland hay meadows remain. Meadows are valued for the plants they support which in turn provide habitats for a range of animal species, including brown hare, moss carder bee, marsh fritillary butterfly, curlew and lapwing.”

Tanya St.Pierre, continued: “Wildflower-rich grasslands are one of the best habitats for pollinators. They contain native plant species, which we know support a greater abundance and diversity of bees, butterflies and other pollinators, compared to non-native plants.

“Whatever the size and wherever the location, we love working with local communities and farmers in Cumbria, to create and restore wildflower-rich grasslands which directly help the pollinating species that depend on them. It’s a real bonus that our work not only benefits wildlife but brings these thriving habitats right into the heart of our communities for people to enjoy.”

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