Gibraltar Point celebrates 70 years wild with launch of new book: The Story of Gibraltar Point

Gibraltar Point, the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust’s first nature reserve, was established on 10 December 1948 in partnership with Lincolnshire County Council.

This pioneering partnership saved Gibraltar Point from the threat of development. Today it is well known for its impressive views and sheer scale and diversity of wildlife, and is recognised as an internationally important nature reserve.

Now, its history is told in a new book: The Story of Gibraltar Point by Barrie Wilkinson.

Barrie Wilkinson, former Trust Reserves Manager and long serving volunteer, first became involved with Gibraltar Point in 1952 at the age of 15. Barrie tells the story of Gibraltar Point through his researches, the recollections of those who have known and loved the place, and his own experiences of a lifetime’s involvement in the wildlife and with those involved with the use and management of the site.

The Story of Gibraltar Point is available in a limited edition hardback and softback from the Gibraltar Point Visitor Centre and Banovallum House, the headquarters of the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust in Horncastle. All money raised from sales of the book directly support the work of the Trust.

Barrie Wilkinson

Barrie Wilkinson launches his book The Story of Gibraltar Point

The making of the nature reserve

Secured for wildlife and people
The sand hills to the south of Skegness had long been recognised as an area that was important for wildlife and were included in a national list of sites ‘worthy of preservation’ as early as 1912. But it wasn’t until the 1930s that action was taken to protect Gibraltar Point from development. A speedway track and a seaside resort were amongst the proposals. Luckily, Lincolnshire County Council saw the threats and acted. The Sandhills Act of 1932 enabled the Council to control development of Lincolnshire’s coastal sand hills and acquire them if necessary. In 1937, they bought most of Gibraltar Point to safeguard it against development.

A new kind of nature reserve
By the time the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust was launched on 2 December 1948, negotiations were already underway for the establishment of a nature reserve at Gibraltar Point. On 10 December 1948, the Lincolnshire County Council signed a landmark agreement with the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust. The Trust would manage Gibraltar Point as a nature reserve, not only for wildlife but for people too.