Meadow purchase within arms reach as group nears target funding

A wildlife haven in Church Stretton is set to be bought by campaigners as they are close to reaching their £25,000 fundraising target.

Cudwell Meadow near Church Stretton
Cudwell Meadow near Church Stretton

The group of committed volunteers who are fundraising to purchase part of a wetland in Church Stretton are only £1,000 away from target and are hoping for some last minute donations.

The site, named Cudwell Meadow, is a haven for wildlife and the group wants to safeguard its future for nature and turn it into a conservation area.

Isabel Carter, member of the Stretton Wetlands Group, said: "We have been really encouraged by the response we have had from local people.

"100 per cent of the money raised has come from personal donations, and with just about £1,200 to go, we are within touching distance of reaching our goal, which is really encouraging."

The appeal has been created in a collaborative venture between the Stretton Wetlands Interest Group and Middle Marches Community Land Trust.

They aim to secure the three-acre site to the south of Church Stretton, comprising of a meadow and adjoining wetlands, which are home to water voles, visiting otters, invertebrates and amphibians.


Isabel added: "When we read about the wide scale environmental challenges that now confront us, it's easy to become discouraged.

"But we feel that the apparent success of our appeal is hopeful. It shows that people do want to take positive action to save and protect habitat for rare plants, insects and wildlife, particularly when it's on their doorstep."

In the coming days, once the final amount has been secured, the Strettons Wetlands Group will be announcing their plans for the future conservation of the meadow, which will include encouraging water voles and otters to become more frequent visitors.

The £25,000 needed will buy the site, hold it in trust and fund its ecological restoration. Members of the group also hope it will allow the meadow to be used in future generations.

Since 2016, the Stretton Wetlands Interest Group has been working closely with those who own the Stretton Wetlands to find out more about the area and its potential for wildlife. So far, they have enabled much of the area to be recognised as a wildlife site by Shropshire Wildlife Trust; created a boardwalk along the existing footpath and completed more conservation work on the site to identify species living there.

To donate, visit or leave a cheque in an envelope marked Wetlands Appeal at the Church Stretton Town Hall.

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