NWT Cley Marshes is Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s oldest and best known nature reserve. It was purchased in 1926 to be held 'in perpetuity as a bird breeding sanctuary'. It provided a blue print for nature conservation which has now been replicated across the UK.The water levels in the pools and reedbeds are regulated to ensure they are ideal for the resident birds, and reed is harvested every year to keep the reedbeds in good condition.
The shingle beach and saline lagoons, along with the grazing marsh and reedbed support large numbers of wintering and migrating wildfowl and waders, as well as bittern, marsh harrier and bearded tit.
A new eco-friendly visitor centre opened in 2007 containing a café, shop, viewing areas (including viewing from a camera on the reserve), exhibition area, interpretation and toilets. The view from the visitor centre across the Marsh to the sea is breathtaking.
In order to secure the essential funding for the restoration of the main shooting pools on the newly acquired Pope’s Marsh, NWT are having to work within a strict timescale. This winter’s storm surge caused a delay to the start of the pool restoration and as a result the works have extended further into March than originally planned. The work is proceeding well and every effort is being made to ensure the works are completed as soon as possible. Wildlife mitigation has taken place to ensure birds will not nest within the works area.