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News Items

July 30, 2020
Latest News Laura Wharton

The Big Butterfly Count at Sculthorpe Moor!

Take part in the Big Butterfly Count at Sculthorpe! Are you taking part in this year's Big Butterfly Count? We’ve been out and about spotting butterflies on the Sculthorpe Reserve this week, all you need is a sharp eye and the free Big Butterfly Count app:…
July 15, 2020
Latest News Laura Wharton

Steep Learning Curve for Volunteers Working on New Sculthorpe Walkways

Steep Learning Curve for Volunteers Working on New Sculthorpe Walkways The Get on Board scheme at Sculthorpe Moor is about halfway through thanks to the generous donations from the public. Volunteers have been shovelling, rollering, and learning their way…
July 15, 2020
Latest News Laura Wharton

Recent Peregrine Rescue Highlights Great Work in UK for Bird of Prey Conservation

Recent Peregrine Rescue Highlights Great Work in UK for Bird of Prey Conservation A recent Peregrine rescue highlights the important work that is happening in the UK with birds of prey, and for the most part goes unreported. A gamekeeper who works on an…

Gyr / Saker Falcon Reunited with Owner (over 125 miles from home!)

Jul 01, 2020 964
Gyr / Saker Falcon Reunited with Owner (over 125 miles from home!) The Hawk and Owl Trust…

A walk in the past at Shapwick Moor

Jun 12, 2020 714
This week Simon Beard, representing Hawk & Owl at the Shapwick Moor Reserve, met with…

Sculthorpe Re-Opening Monday 15th June

Jun 08, 2020 1090
We are re-opening from Monday 15th June The reserve is open seven days per week, 8 am – 4…

It's Volunteer Week at Sculthorpe Moor

Jun 03, 2020 939
We’re delighted to start welcoming familiar faces back on to the Sculthorpe Reserve this…

Yellow Rattle Success at Shapwick Moor Reserve

May 27, 2020 684
An update from Simon Beard at our Shapwick Reserve in the South West. After years of…

Sculthorpe Reserve Slips into Summer

May 19, 2020 1023
Sculthorpe Moor is slipping into the warmer summer months. Spring shows of bluebells and…

Covid 19 - Update

May 13, 2020 976
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Update on the 13th May. The Trust welcomes the government’s announcement this week to…

Lockdown life continues at the Hawk and Owl Trust

May 10, 2020 1112
With a skeleton crew at our reserves and project sites, social distancing measurements in…

Hamish Smith on the Bath Peregrines

Apr 26, 2020 1241
Since 2006 a total of 38 peregrines have fledged successfully from the Bath Peregrines…

Bath Peregrine Update: The First Chick of 2020 is Here!

Apr 21, 2020 2976
The first Bath Peregrines chick of 2020 is here! Hamish Smith has been keeping a close…

Sculthorpe moor oak fen by Andy Thompson

The ink is barely dry, but today Hawk and Owl Trust are celebrating watching the mid-summer sun rising over their new land area. They have ‘signed on the dotted line’ in the purchase of 150 acres of land surrounding their existing 45 acre Sculthorpe Moor Nature Reserve near Fakenham in North Norfolk. The reserve is famous for its wildlife and habitats and with the addition of the new land will offer a home to a vast range of wildlife from plants and fungi, to Otters and birds of prey. Public support for the appeal to raise the £1.7million needed to buy the land and turn it into a wildlife paradise has been astonishing, with enough raised in just two years to enable the land to be secured and the three-year project to manage the land and develop the infrastructure to be started. The project relied on a major Heritage Lottery Fund award, and a significant amount has also been donated by the Local Enterprise Programme (LEP).

The Hawk and Owl Trust, can’t wait to get started on delivering the 3-year project to allow public access to the land and develop the habitats to make the land more suitable for the widest range of wildlife using their proven land management techniques. Sculthorpe Moor Nature Reserve is already one of the country’s most accessible reserves and is internationally recognised for its wildlife. The reserve is located in the beautiful Wensum Valley in Norfolk, and is a marvellous, peaceful place with a huge variety of wildlife in a rich and unusual mosaic of woodland, fen and reedbed habitats. At only 18-hectares (45 acres), the existing reserve is easy to explore and offers everyone a real opportunity to get involved with the natural environment. Small but perfectly formed: a real gem, it is recognised how important being out in the fresh air is to our mental well-being.

The two large areas of land on either side are currently rough grassland and were about to be put on the open market for sale. Hawk and Owl Trust were given two years to raise the money to purchase the land and begin the project and thanks to the generosity of a huge number of visitors and supporters, alongside a large Heritage Lottery Fund application and significant donations from individuals and the Local Enterprise Programme (Norfolk LEP).

The new area of land has a rich history of peat cutting, gravel extraction, gunpowder manufacture, brush making, shooting range, charcoal making and water mills. The Trust’s vision for the area is about so much more than amazing wildlife. The future will see a rich ecosystem co-existing with the local community with access for all, rural history, rural crafts and traditional sustainable management benefiting the landscape, people and wildlife. The three-year project to deliver the vision for the reserve will begin on August 5th as the diggers roll onto the barren fields to scrape away the first bucket loads of soil in the formation of open water and redirection of the ditches. A new entrance near the visitor centre will be the next task, as boardwalks and other fully accessible pathways will be taking shape around the reserve.

As wildlife struggles more with loss of habitat, man-made obstacles and changing climate, nature reserves are an increasingly important oasis. Likewise, it is now recognised that activity out in the fresh air, and enjoying mature, are crucial to our own health and mental well-being. One of the key goals at Sculthorpe has always been accessibility to all, allowing everyone that chance to experience wild places. A programme of activities, and the opportunity to get involved and volunteer have always been a key role and the new land will enable the Trust to offer this to even more people.