Can you help us restore Reeves Meadows?

In the past, there were wild spaces everywhere: today, the Little Ouse Headwaters is a rare remaining area of wetland. Valley fens like ours have all but disappeared along with the wet woodlands and damp meadows that are such important places for wildlife. In its sixteen year history our community conservation project has acquired and restored 15 parcels of land along the  first few miles of the Little Ouse valley - the headwaters - to help protect the many rare and special species that still make their homes there. Larger and more joined-up areas of land provide much better protection for wildlife than small and isolated fragments and so we are piecing together a continuous corridor for wildlife along the river and, at the same time, opening up the valley for everyone wanting to walk, unwind and enjoy wild nature.

Thanks to the generosity of donors and borrowing from a land reserve fund we have been able to purchase the last piece in the jigsaw of protected wildlife sites that reunite the ancient fens of Blo'Norton, Hinderclay and Thelnetham. Beautiful and secluded Reeves Meadows lie between Hinderclay Fen and Thelnetham Old Fen. We now need to raise the funds to restore the meadows and to pay back the land reserve fund so as to be prepared when more land becomes available. Restoring and preserving the future of Reeves Meadows will have far-reaching benefits for the area's unique wildlife and habitats, ensuring that they are protected for generations to come.

Reeves Meadows occupy a crucial location

The central position of the meadows in the LOHP's landholding makes them an ideal gateway for visitors wanting to enjoy the extensive network of paths around the varied  landscapes of the upper Little Ouse valley. Planned access improvements will including a discrete parking area by the road; the walk from this, past Thelnetham's secluded medieval Church and down through the meadows to the river and fens, is a delight. Lower down the meadows, as well as the local paths you can join the 93 mile Angles Way long-distance path, voted best water-side walk in Britain.

Please help us to conserve the habitat of this Kingfisher and the very many other special species of birds, animals and plants that depend on the valley's fens, wet woodlands and meadows, and heathlands.

The cost of Reeves Meadows was £140,000 and their restoration will cost a further £40,000.

Total raised to date: £22,565.

Every donation, large and small, will play a really important part in helping us to reach our goal. We hope to get help from other charities and organisations but donations from individuals are our most valued form of support.

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As well as providing a vital link between wildlife sites, Reeves Meadows themselves offer enormous potential for wildlife and particularly for grassland flowers and the great variety of insects they support. Barn Owls already hunt over the meadows and several species of bats hunt along the hedgerows. We plan to restore flower-rich grassland over much of the site and improve the water courses, including the Little Ouse on the meadows’ northern boundary, as homes for water voles and otters, as well as a wide variety of dragonflies and other wetland invertebrates.

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