Derbyshire residents potting, planting and rewilding to fight climate change

Derbyshire residents potting, planting and rewilding to fight climate change

Derbyshire Wildlife Trust is encouraging people to take action now for wildlife by creating more local wild-spaces for nature, potting plants, letting gardens grow wild, and campaigning for change.

Each action may be small, but together these wild activities can make a difference and encourage others to join in, which leads to a bigger impact.

Derbyshire Wildlife Trust are calling for all residents, businesses and leaders from Bamford to Buxton; Matlock to Derby to share five key actions to take now.

1.     Grab a pot and plant away by taking part in #gopotty for wildlife

2.     Lock away your mower and join in with  #growdontmow

3.     Call for local councils to commit to our Nature Recovery Motion

4.     Go on a Big Wild Walk for nature and get sponsored to raise vital funds to help wildlife

5.     Reuse, reduce, recycle with our charity shops

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Derbyshire Wildlife Trust are gathering pledges and actions via their webpage where people can find out more

Ben Carter, Derbyshire Wildlife Trust said; “By taking part in one or more of these, and sharing with others why this is important, everyone can demonstrate they want strong action on the nature and climate crisis. Plus they will make their local neighbourhood a bit greener, a bit wilder and have some fun!”

The recovery of nature has never been more urgent. In local wildlife and green places,Derbyshire residents have one of the most powerful tools for fighting climate change’ right here on our doorsteps. It has been estimated that healthy natural systems could provide one-third of the most cost effective so fighting climate change(i).

Manor Road in Belper is one such street to take action. Here, residents are working together to rewild their back gardens and create a network for wildlife. They set up a Neighbourhood Watch group in January 2020 to look out for each other during dark winter nights but with the onset of the pandemic, it provided even more support for many of the 50 homes. 

As the group grew, they were inspired by concern for the environment to do more in their gardens for wildlife as well as growing and sharing their own home-grown produce. Many homes joined the call to leave lawn grass long during the spring and summer when wildlife is at its most active. Residents noticed an increase in wildlife visits to their gardens as a result, and children especially enjoyed setting up bug hotels and wild areas. 

Many homes have continued to keep areas of grass long and found more ways to attract wildlife to their gardens in support of Derbyshire Wildlife Trust’s “Grow Don’t Mow” campaign. Several residents have also become more closely involved in rewilding surrounding areas, setting up nature trails, on the site of the Slenderalla factory car park for example. 

Victoria Harrison, a teacher and Manor Road resident says; "Our gardens can do so much for wildlife - it's been amazing to see more butterflies and pollinators this summer, and the kids loved it too. It's made us feel more reflective and open - we notice more nature around us and deepened that connection, which has been a blessing in the last year. As a community, it's brought us closer together and people have enjoyed bringing different skills and getting involved." 

This matters now because the UK is hosting COP26 (The 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties) 1st – 12th November. The role of nature is one of the topics at the forefront of the conference. The decisions made here will be crucial. It is vital that global and local leaders lead strong action to place nature’s recovery at the heart of the response.

Why is a nature base approach important? 

Nature is our greatest ally in our response to the changing change. Tree-planting and peatlands restoration draw down carbon from the atmosphere, wilder river catchments (including beavers!) reduce the impact of flooding. Nature rich green spaces in our cities and low-intensity sustainable land use practises deliver more for the environment.

This approach leads to thriving green cities and landscapes that are good for people, good for wildlife and good for the economy. But we need 1/3 of land in Derbyshire to be managed for nature in this way to turn around the crisis, as well as a planning system that would protect land in recovery for nature.

“We know that the majority of people want a greener, wilder future, free from the threat of climate change. Alongside cutting emissions, nature has a key role to play.” says Matt Buckler, Head of Nature’s Recovery at the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust. “Imagine seeing stunning wild places here in Derbyshire, walking with friends and families through them and knowing that restoring nature in this way has helped to protect our future. This is an achievable goal but we need to demonstrate that we are ready to do our part, and to tell our leaders to do theirs.”