Other previous partnership projects

The following projects have successfully been completed:

    • Nature in Your Neighbourhood 2002-2004
    • Cam Catchment Sustainable Farming Project 2003-2005
    • Water Vole Recovery Project – 2004-2006
    • Fenland Drainage Ditch Project – 2005

You can also find examples of local projects we supported in the Library section under “Small Projects Grant – Examples.”

Nature In Your Neighbourhood provided support and encouragement for urban communities wishing to improve their local green spaces for wildlife. The project offered:
· Advice and technical expertise with creating management plans
· Help with preparing grant bids and managing funds
· Help with organising community consultation, training and events
· Greater access to our partnership organisations

River and riverside habitats support a number of rare or threatened species, including otter and spined loach, and the Cam Catchment project addressed the issue of diffuse pollution of the river through farming. Several farm walks were organised and advice given to farmers.

The Water Vole Recovery Project filled in many of the gaps in survey information. It informed us that the Cambridgeshire fens hold a scattered but substantial concentration of water voles that is of national importance. A project officer – funded for two years part time – also provided training and advice for drainage engineers, farmers and staff from the sponsoring organisations.

A Fenland Drainage Ditch Project was set up in September 2005 to provide conservation advice and support to the Middle Level Commissioners and 36 Internal Drainage Boards (IDBs) in the Fenland area. Cliff Carson worked as project officer for a 1.5 year pilot phase. This then became a full-time Environmental Officer role for the Middle Level Commissioners.

The role is supported by a Steering Group with representatives from the Biodiversity Partnership, Natural England, Environment Agency, Internal Drainage Boards, The Middle Level Commissioners and The Wildlife Trust.

With the help of a SITA trust grant and additional funding from the Biodiversity Partnership, 70 otter holts were installed over the course of a three year project. The holts are fitted with infrared cameras and some of them show that the holts are getting used, see the following otter holt clips.

The Environmental Officer role has included carrying out surveys focused on water voles and advising IDB district officers and machine operators on vole-friendly ditching methods. The officer also influences the Middle Level’s conservation policy, raises the profile of wildlife associated with drainage ditches and promotes ecologically sympathetic ditch management to drainage engineers, IDBs and private landowners.

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