All’s welcome: celebrating LGBTQ+ pride at Norfolk Wildlife Trust

Blog post by Meg Watts on 22 Jun, 2022

Whilst Norfolk Wildlife Trust celebrates June as our month of easy actions for nature (otherwise known as 30 Days Wild), I’m also celebrating for another reason: it’s LGBTQ+ Pride month! 

LGBTQ+ stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Queer (or Questioning) people, however the term covers a whole umbrella of many different sexualities and gender identities. In fact, there are so many we’ve added, plus – it’s quite impossible to narrow down the whole spectrum of gender identity and sexuality to a catchy acronym! It’s important to consider LGBTQ+ issues alongside experiences of nature and environmental issues because being an LGBTQ+ person can severely impact your experiences outdoors. As our CEO Eliot Lyne says, “We want Norfolk’s nature to be enjoyed by everyone, and we have a lot to do to get there!”  

Let’s put this into context. Most (if not all) LGBTQ+ people will experience discrimination outdoors, however transgender people are particularly likely to experience hate crimes. 2,630 trans victims reported attacks in 2020/21; a UK statistic that becomes even more shocking when you consider that 88% of trans people don’t report serious hate crimes. This begins to illustrate why LGBTQ+ people might not feel comfortable walking alone outdoors, being outdoors with a partner, or even going to an isolated space like a reserve. As former Out for Nature LGBTQ+ leader, Nathan Liddle, describes; "Nature reserves are often seen as if they’re for a particular type of person – older, white, middle-class. How are they going to react to two men holding hands? It’s always in the back of my mind.” 

We want to eradicate this fear. NWT ambassador Nick Acheson describes Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s stance perfectly; ‘As nature conservationists we celebrate biological diversity, we understand how important it is for functioning ecosystems, and we stand up to protect it. The same is true for human diversity. Our society is richer, stronger and more creative for including and fostering a wonderful diversity of people and their voices. People from every background and from every point on the amazing spectrum of human identity are not just welcome on our reserves, at our events and in our team. It's more than that: diversity is at the core of who we are and what we strive to achieve for nature and society.” 

Meg Watts, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion intern

Meg Watts, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion intern

During my time here at the Norfolk Wildlife Trust, I’ve written about LGBTQ+ people in nature and conservation, joined the national ‘Out For Nature’ LGBTQ+ staff network and made excellent progress working with LGBTQ+ people across Norfolk to make nature more welcoming for everyone. This work is vitally important to the trust, but also to me as a (self-described) queer, non-binary person. In my work as a paid Equality, Diversity and Inclusion intern, I’m drawing all of our teams together to brainstorm a greener future for everyone – cultivating a culture of acceptance, recognition and support for staff, volunteers and visitors alike. After all, we’re all just here because we love nature – discrimination should ideally never play a part in how we experience the natural world.. 

It’s amazing watching this conversation grow within the Norfolk Wildlife Trust, but I know we can go further – so I’m extending a branch (or a rainbow) to any LGBTQ+ or social justice groups who are interested in visiting our reserves, collaborating on events, or working together moving forward. We want you here. We want you out in nature. You’re just as welcome as all of our other visitors, staff, volunteers and trustees, and we’re excited to get to know you all. 

For further information and collaboration opportunities regarding Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, you can contact me at [email protected].  

Have a lovely pride if you’re celebrating! 


Share this

Latest Blog Posts

30 Days Wild blog competition winner 30 Days Wild blog competiti...
by NWT on 10 Aug, 2022
The Western Link: What would happen to our wildlife? The Western Link: What woul...
by Mike Jones, NWT Conservation Officer (Planning)  on 08 Aug, 2022
Claylands Meadow Management Claylands Meadow Management
by Helaina Parkinson on 03 Aug, 2022
10 years of the NWT Gallery 10 years of the NWT Gallery
by NWT on 22 Jul, 2022
Tips for birdwatching with your dog Tips for birdwatching with ...
by Izzy Williamson on 09 Jul, 2022
Celebrating our patron, Her Majesty The Queen, on her Platinum Jubilee Celebrating our patron, Her...
by Josie Collins on 01 Jun, 2022
Norfolk's Seals: Past, Present and Future Norfolk's Seals: Past, Pres...
by Katy Ellis on 19 May, 2022
Bishop’s Garden Wild project – how did it go? Bishop’s Garden Wild projec...
by Susannah Armstrong on 05 May, 2022
Put your garden to the test! Put your garden to the test!
by The Wildlife Trusts on 21 Apr, 2022
NWT Young People's Photography Competition - See the winners! NWT Young People's Photogra...
by Rachael Murray on 07 Apr, 2022
Getting Wild About Gardens Getting Wild About Gardens
by The Wildlife Trusts on 24 Mar, 2022
A tribute to Peter Lambley MBE, 1946-2022 A tribute to Peter Lambley ...
by Helen Baczkowska on 10 Mar, 2022
Wooing in the Wild Wooing in the Wild
by The Wildlife Trusts on 24 Feb, 2022
Mammal Mysteries Mammal Mysteries
by Darren Tansley on 10 Feb, 2022
A Conservation Work Party at Upton Fen A Conservation Work Party a...
by Jerry Simpson on 27 Jan, 2022
How to Identify Owls How to Identify Owls
by The Wildlife Trusts on 13 Jan, 2022
NWT Recommends: Holiday Reads NWT Recommends: Holiday Reads
by Emily Mildren & Susannah Armstrong (with contributions from several NWT staff!) on 17 Dec, 2021
Broadland Group's Return to Work at Upton Fen Broadland Group's Return to...
by Jerry Simpson on 09 Dec, 2021
The Queerness of Nature: In conversation with James McDermott The Queerness of Nature: In...
by Meg Watts & Molly Bernardin on 02 Dec, 2021
COP26: What's it all about and what do we want to achieve? COP26: What's it all about ...
by Kathryn Brown on 04 Nov, 2021
A New Direction: Starting Small by Creating Norfolk Wetlands A New Direction: Starting S...
by William Walker on 21 Oct, 2021
Broadland Group Moth Night Broadland Group Moth Night
by Jerry Simpson on 07 Oct, 2021
Moth and butterfly survival strategies Moth and butterfly survival...
by The Wildlife Trusts on 23 Sep, 2021
Out for Nature: Reflections on Pride with The Wildlife Trusts LGBTQ+ Employee Network Out for Nature: Reflections...
by Meg Watts on 14 Sep, 2021