Lotto cash helps nature reserve

Northumberland Wildlife Trust volunteers Dave Gibson, Christine Hall, Peter Holt and Andrew Miller after their painting of the Holywell Hides.
Northumberland Wildlife Trust volunteers Dave Gibson, Christine Hall, Peter Holt and Andrew Miller after their painting of the Holywell Hides.

Improvements have been made to a much-visited nature reserve thanks to a lottery boost.

Wooden bird-watching hides and viewing screens at Holywell Pond, just outside Holywell village, have been repaired and repainted this summer.

The work has been carried out thanks to a grant from the People’s Postcode Lottery.

Volunteers at one of Northumberland Wildlife Trust’s most popular local nature reserves have turned their attention to maintenance work after the dry weather slowed down vegetation growth, reducing the need for subsequent clearance.

Duncan Hoyle, estates officer at the trust said: “Support from players of the People’s Postcode Lottery allows us to purchase materials to help us undertake tasks on our reserves that benefit wildlife, but which also which make a visit to the site much more pleasant for members of the public.”

Holywell Pond is a result of the area’s mining heritage and is a haven for over-wintering birds, which are attracted by the pond’s proximity to the coast.

Breeding species of birds include little grebe, pochard, graylag goose and sedge warbler. Goose numbers grow during the winter when they are joined by wildfowl, including widgeon, golden eye and tufted duck.

The neutral grasslands of the site support populations of common spotted and northern marsh orchids.

For more information visit www.nwt.org.uk/reserves/holywell-pond