Wildlife boost for school thanks to generous donation

A Market Drayton primary school has received homes for wildlife in its social farm as part of a donation from Shropshire developer David Wilson Homes.

David Wilson Homes has donated wildlife accessories to pupils at the Longlands Primary School in Market Drayton. Photo Mike Sewell
David Wilson Homes has donated wildlife accessories to pupils at the Longlands Primary School in Market Drayton. Photo Mike Sewell

Longlands Primary School is located close to Drayton Meadows on Blandford Way and received the donation from the homebuilder in order to encourage wildlife to visit the school’s unique outdoor space. Included within the donated items were nest boxes, bird feeders, insect hotels and solitary beehives.

The eco allotment and social farm was created for pupils to gain practical countryside skills, a knowledge of animal care and experience in growing their own produce. Established in 2019, the farm’s residents include chickens, guinea pigs, rabbits, turkeys and goats.

Plans for the farm are constantly evolving and the school has ideas to improve the space and welcome even more animals in the new year.

Zillah Cope, headteacher at Longlands Primary School, said: “We are delighted to receive this generous donation from David Wilson Homes. It will make a huge difference to our outdoor area. The social farm is a huge asset to our school and benefits our pupils in a number of different ways. We also host regular community days where we invite people in to experience the benefits of working with the animals and supporting the development of our eco allotment.”

Since opening, the farm has received the prestigious Platinum Award from The Woodland Trust after the school participated in their Green Tree Schools initiative. They were also awarded RHS School Gardeners of the Year in 2020 and the Social Farm Award.

In 2021, Longlands Primary School entered the Market Drayton in Bloom awards and received second place for Best Environmentally Friendly Garden and third for Best Allotment.

Dominic Harman, managing director of David Wilson Homes Mercia, said: “As the UK’s leading housebuilder, we care a great deal about the nation’s wildlife, shown by our longstanding commitment with the RSPB.

“We were thrilled to donate a number of wildlife friendly habitats and accessories to Longlands Primary School for its unique social farm and allotments and we hope this will encourage more schools and homeowners to consider making their outdoor space more wildlife-friendly in future.”

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