TV star’s dazzled by urban reserve
WE were all a bit starstruck this week, with the arrival of a wildlife celebrity at our nature reserve just a stone’s throw from Manchester city centre.
TV presenter and Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts vice-president Nick Baker came along to Moston Fairway and was amazed at just what we’ve got going on.
We invited him along to meet the children, teachers and enthusiastic local people who have been creating something special in the area around the Lancashire Wildlife Trust nature reserve.
“The enthusiasm, sense of momentum, and community spirit has been overwhelming”, he said. “This is what it’s all about, opening up our natural world to young enthusiasm and inspiring kids to love being outdoors”.
Broadhurst Primary, St Mary’s CE Primary, Crab Lane Primary and Bowker Vale Primary were celebrating the Forest Schools project we’re delivering with funding from players of People’s Postcode Lottery.
This project has given Moston Fairway a massive boost, brought a whole new group of kids and families into contact with the reserve and generated amenities and partnerships that will mean community engagement goes from strength to strength.
Forest schools use learning activities and play in woodland to engage children with the outdoors and nature, to get them fit and active, and to boost their creativity and confidence. Moston Fairway is a unique oasis in Manchester.
The Moston Fairway reserve page at lancswt. org.uk has great photos and much more information on the rare wildlife – and marsh with abundant smooth newts – that you can discover on a visit.
The University of Manchester associate dean for social responsibility, Professor Amanda Bamford, praised the trust’s work with inner city communities: “Nick Baker and I have been inspired talking to the children and adults here. This is a flagship scheme which I’m proud to promote to the people of Manchester.”
Moston Fairway is the focus of the trust’s work in the area but is just one part of the wider Moston Brook wildlife corridor. And there’s a free event coming up to encourage people to discover the wider green lung in this part of urban Manchester – the Moston Brook Fun Day, 1-4pm on Saturday, August 1. Organised by Moston Brook Friends Group and Manchester and Oldham councils, there will be a wide variety of activities.
The Fun Day takes place on Park Avenue, which lies just off Broadway – the A663 – a short distance from its junction with the A62 Oldham Road heading out of the city centre. Stick M35 0DY in your sat-nav and look for the signposts to a stewarded car park on Broadway opposite the entrance to Park Avenue.
Contact Adam Moolna, communications officer (Forest Schools), on firstname.lastname@example.org for further information on Moston Fairway, Forest Schools and our work supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery. The trust also runs Forest Schools and other education sessions at Seven Acres in central Bolton and at Brockholes near Preston.
The Wildlife Trust for Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside is dedicated to the protection and promotion of the wildlife in Lancashire, seven boroughs of Greater Manchester and four of Merseyside, all lying north of the River Mersey. It manages about 40 nature reserves and 20 Local Nature Reserves covering acres of woodland, wetland, upland and meadow. The trust has 26,000 members, and more than 1,200 volunteers. To become a member go to the website at www. lancswt.org.uk or call 01772 324129.
●● Nick Baker talks to children at Moston Fairway