Open events to be held in village nature reserve after volunteers' hard work

Volunteers in Albrighton have been working hard to keep a green space tidy for people and the resident wildlife over the past year, ready for an open event later this summer.

The committee at the Albrighton and Donington Nature Reserve are looking forward to hosting open events again after the green space was used more than ever before over the past year.

The popularity of open spaces started at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic with the first lockdown as people needed fresh air and a chance to escape the house – whether working from home or home schooling.

Since then, the importance of getting out has been magnified and volunteers in Albrighton are hoping people will continue to look after the space as they host an open event on July 18.

Emma Byrne, chair of the management committee for the nature reserve, said the volunteers work really hard and they had local school pupils come down recently to help plant 60 trees – so the space is looking greener than ever.

"The site was used massively as every green space was during lockdown," she said. "Particularly when the 'stay local' message was out, the reserve had more use than ever before.

"As a result we have had people that live in Albrighton who didn't even know it existed who have been using it. So we have seen lots of people at the site we haven't seen before and lots of positive feedback from people about it.

"It has of course come with its own problems as we have seen a huge increase in litter and dog fouling which is not so much a great thing. During the first lockdown we had to cease all volunteer activities but were able to start up individual work in the other lockdown periods.

"We have 18 active, hardworking volunteers of all ages, with lots of skills which means we can fix things or complete projects ourselves without having to contract people."

Emma said the nature reserve is well-loved in the village, with people valuing the space, despite it not being huge.

The team are hosting an open day on July 18 that people are invited to attend. The volunteers will be showing people around the site, and showing the moths that live there, and others will be hosting orienteering courses, as well as wildlife inspections.

Emma said: "The nature reserve is massively used and much-loved by the community so we wanted the chance to open it up properly and let people explore."

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