Lincolnshire's meadow network expanded and connected

Friday 30th June 2017

Raking the hay at Bishop's Meadow in NettlehamRaking the hay at Bishop's Meadow in Nettleham

Hundreds of volunteers have surveyed road verges, collected wildflower seeds and created new community meadows to help build a wildflower meadow network

The three-year Wildflower Meadow Network Project, launched in 2014, has inspired community groups and local landowners to create and restore a network of wildflower meadows throughout Lincolnshire’s rolling limestone hills in the west of the county, and the chalk of the Lincolnshire Wolds.

As the project draws to a close, over 20 community meadows have been created in churchyards, urban community green spaces and village greens. These meadows have been planted with over 5,900 locally sourced wildflowers. Volunteer plant propagators grew the wildflowers from seed collected from Lincolnshire's Coronation Meadow at Red Hill nature reserve in the Lincolnshire Wolds. More than 200 local residents across the county have planted wildflowers and raked hay in their community green spaces including over 100 16-18 year old volunteers from National Citizen Service.

The Wildflower Meadow Network Project also oversaw the final stages of the Life on the Verge Surveys which began in 2009. More than 250 volunteers have helped to survey over 7,600km of road verge. Their efforts have resulted in 159 road verges being designated as Local Wildlife Sites equating to over 100 hectares of wildflower-rich grassland along approximately 300km of road verge.

William Brown from Glebe Farm and volunteer with the project describes its impact:
“The months I spent exploring the often hidden wildflowers of the narrow mid-summer lanes encouraged me to look closely for wildlife and colour at a small scale. However, the project demonstrated that by combining the efforts of individual volunteers, the wildflowers of these seemingly isolated lanes could potentially be joined together to form a landscape-scale network. This understanding has inspired me to create a series of wildflower belts around arable fields on the family farm, which although narrow combine to form long corridors of flower-rich habitat.”

Wildflower Meadow Hub

To help local communities and landowners build on this meadow legacy, an online ‘Wildflower Meadow Hub’ has been developed which includes a downloadable Meadow Creation Guide, ‘How-to’ videos, a Meadow Management Calendar and more.

The Lincolnshire Wildflower Meadow Network Project was a three year partnership project (2014-2017), with funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Lincolnshire County Council and Lincolnshire Wolds Countryside Service.




Tagged with: Fundraising, Living Landscapes, Species, Volunteering, Life on the Verge, Wildflower meadows