Government grant for biosphere

North Devon comes out on top for highly competitive government grant.

NORTH DEVON has become one of the first nature improvement areas in the country, securing �731,367 worth of funding.

The grant, which is hoped to unlock a further �3 million from different organisations, comes from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and will be used on a flagship project.

The project is one of 12 nationally, and was selected from 76 proposals submitted originally.

Mike Moser, chair of the North Devon Biosphere Partnership said: “This fantastic investment will benefit our rarest wildlife, the quality of our rivers, Culm grasslands and woodlands.

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“It will also provide a boost for farmers and woodland managers, and make our area even more attractive for green tourism.

“The World Biosphere status given to northern Devon challenges us to do things differently; to invest in nature for the good of our economy and for everyone who lives here, and to work with people to keep this place special, long into the future. This project will do just that.”

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The project, led by led on behalf of the Biosphere Reserve Partnership by the Devon Wildlife Trust, will aim to recreate and restore important habitats such as grassland and woodland, as well as advising and supporting farmers and landowners on how best to steward their land.

Harry Barton, CEO of Devon Wildlife Trust said: “There are few places in Britain with more impressive wildlife than North Devon, and that’s why it is one of only three Biosphere Reserves in the country.

“But this isn’t just about protecting wildlife, important though that is. It’s about showing that if we look after our wetlands and woodlands properly, we can help guarantee a reliable and high quality water supply, and that this way of managing our natural resources is excellent value for money.”

“This is a project for the future, and that is why I am so proud and privileged to be part of it.”

The project will work across the River Torridge from Bradworthy to Bideford.

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