Sweet Briar Marshes

Close to the centre of Norwich lies Sweet Briar Marshes: 90 acres of fen, rough meadow, grazing marsh, old hedgerows and young woodland, full of incredible wildlife.

This uniquely wild place and its sensitive ecology – including a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) – was in danger of being lost forever. We launched a public appeal last year to save it and thanks to enormous support from funders, the local community and our loyal supporters, were able to take the land into our ownership.

Long-term NWT supporters, Aviva, generously pledged up to £300,000 in match funding, helping to complete the public appeal to purchase Sweet Briar Marshes just four months after it was launched, making this the fastest appeal success in our history.  Aviva will continue to support the project, through the discovery phase and beyond, both financially and through volunteering. 

Having bought this land, we now have the chance to restore its biodiversity, enhance it for people and wildlife alike, and have the remarkable opportunity to write the next chapter in the story of Sweet Briar Marshes. However, we don’t want to do this on our own. We want to involve the local community in helping us to design this new, wild place.

The ‘Discovery Stage’

Since purchasing Sweet Briar Marshes, we have been busy getting to know the site. This has involved carrying out surveys to find out as much as possible about the ecology, and establishing a reserves and community engagement team.

Water vole, common toad and frog, orchids, reed bunting, willow warbler and snipe are just some of the species that have been found in our baseline ecological surveys, as we move forward with exciting plans to create a new wild space for nature and people in Norwich.  

Working alongside the community

Those who live close by Sweet Briar Marshes are key to helping us ensure the reserve works for nature and people. We have been working closely with local people, groups and schools to encourage them to share their ideas about what they want to see on NWT Sweet Briar Marshes at a series of events and workshops. As well as investigating how they would like to be involved with this amazing wild space in Norwich.

Find out more about our shared vision for Sweet Briar Marshes.

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Sweet Briar Marshes News

2024-02-09 High-tech cows aid nature cons High-tech cows aid nature conservation at NWT Sweet Briar Marshes
Friday 09 February, 2024
Six rare breed cattle, sporting the latest in grazing technology, have been released at Norfolk Wildlife Trust's ...
2023-11-14 Shared vision revealed for Nor Shared vision revealed for Norwich nature reserve
Tuesday 14 November, 2023
We have revealed the emerging long-term vision for our newest nature reserve Sweet Briar Marshes. Sketches,...
2023-11-01 Drop into our Sweet Briar Mars Drop into our Sweet Briar Marshes exhibition this November
Wednesday 01 November, 2023
Norfolk Wildlife Trust will be sharing the emerging shared vision for its newest nature reserve NWT Sweet Briar Marsh...
2023-05-25 Momentum grows for new Norwich Momentum grows for new Norwich nature reserve
Thursday 25 May, 2023
Plans for our new city nature reserve, NWT Sweet Briar Marshes, are taking shape following the end of the first stage...
2023-03-29 Take part in our Sweet Briar M Take part in our Sweet Briar Marshes survey (Now closed)
Wednesday 29 March, 2023
We’re moving forward with exciting plans to transform NWT Sweet Briar Marshes into a new wild space for the peo...
2022-06-22 Appeal success for new Norwich Appeal success for new Norwich nature reserve 
Wednesday 22 June, 2022
Norfolk Wildlife Trust successfully raises £600,000 in partnership with Aviva to protect rare wildlife and conn...