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Restoring RNRs

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Applicant: Kent Wildlife Trust

Project: Restoring Roadside Nature Reserves and Enhancing

Connectivity in the Up on the Downs Area 

Grant award: £11,970

This project has restored and enhanced chalk grassland habitat at three key RNRs in Shepway and Dover, promoting greater biodiversity and ecological connectivity. Contractors have cleared invasive scrub and KWT staff-led volunteer tasks are enhancing and maintaining existing and newly created habitat. Work was undertaken sensitively and phased over the duration of the project to create a mosaic of chalk grassland and scrub, to benefit the many species which inhabit these sites.

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Volunteers working hard at Old Park Hill to clear scrub from the Roadside Nature Reserve

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A well managed chalk grassland Roadside Nature Reserve (above).

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A patch of scrub that has already been cleared by volunteers (above).  This project has allowed this kind of work to be done on a larger scale.  Kent Wildlife Trust phased the work over three years to minimise the impact on reptiles, birds etc… and when the scrub regrows will aim to leave some patches to provide a matrix of scrub and chalk grassland.

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The Old Park Hill bank in Dover (above) has some open bare chalk which is disappearing fast under invasive holm oak, cotoneaster and conifers.  These areas were tackled in blocks with follow up treatment of the cotoneaster each year, to hopefully remove all or most of it.