Archant and Aviva join forces to help nature


A group of Archant and Aviva volunteers clubbed together earlier this month to help carry out essential conservation work at Hickling Broad National Nature Reserve in Norfolk

Donna-Louise Bishop, James Broughton, Anna Dewinter, Lee Protheroe, Stephen Whitlam, Dave Hewitt, David Harrison, Carla Wiggins, Amie Croxton, Camilla Cross and Amy Robertson joined ranks with volunteers from Aviva to help restore an area of the nature reserve known as Cottons Marsh.

Their work consisted of clearing and burning dense scrub to promote a healthy habitat for many rare and unique fen species such as swallowtail butterflies and bitterns. They also assisted with the annual cut of the reedbeds, on an area known as 100-acre reedbed. This is cut in blocks to stop the reedbed drying out and to keep it healthy. It benefits marsh harriers and bearded tits, and cranes, who like to nest on the blocks of land which were cut the previous year.

Head of Development at Norfolk Wildlife Trust, Nik Khandpur, said: “Much of the conservation work that needs to be carried out on our nature reserves can be very labour intensive, which makes the role of volunteer corporate groups, like these from Aviva and Archant, crucial in protecting and managing our sites for wildlife.”

Speaking after the event, Jane Ryan, Fundraising and Legacy Officer at the Norfolk Wildlife Trust said “I have spoken to John at Hickling who was really pleased with what the teams achieved. Over ¾ hectare of reed raked and the majority of it burnt, all ready for the cranes, marsh harriers and bearded tits to nest. Also there was about ¼ hectare of scrub cleared and burnt at Cottons Marsh to make a woodland glade, an area suitable for butterflies. One of the butterflies they are hoping to attract will be the White Admiral.”

Well done team!