From Saturday 22 to Sunday 30 September NWT is holding a week of free walks, talks, activities and events to celebrate our heritage of common land in the county.
There are more than 300 commons in Norfolk, ranging from tiny fragments to several hectares, such as Norfolk Wildlife Trust nature reserves like Roydon Common
and New Buckenham Common
. They are home to a wealth of wildlife: from barn owls to bats, green winged orchids to great crested newts.
As part of the events for Commons Week, NWT will be looking for reptiles on Beeston Common; dyke dipping at Shotesham Common; and recording as many different animal and plant species as we can at Broome Heath, plus many other activities, including plenty for children to get involved with.
Commons in Norfolk
were once commonplace: every parish had one and these were often very extensive. It is thought that more than 25% of Norfolk may at one time have been common land. Despite these losses, many fragments of commons have survived to the present day. Some are well known as nature reserves but most are comparatively small and often little known by nearby communities.
Head of People and Wildlife at NWT, David North said: Each common has its own fascinating story to be discovered. Stories about local history, about how the landscape in Norfolk has, and is, changing, and about the wildlife that makes common land its home. As part of Norfolk Commons Week, Norfolk Wildlife Trust is inviting people to join us on an event, or to visit a local common, take a photo and submit records of wildlife found on commons. We want you to help document some of the many species which have declined elsewhere but still find a habitat and home on our common land.”
Commons Week is part of a two year Wildlife in Common
project, run by Norfolk Wildlife Trust in partnership with Norfolk County Council and University of East Anglia. It empowers local people to connect with their common land, survey commons for wildlife and ultimately may lead to the creation of new commons in Norfolk.
The project has been made possible by National Lottery players thanks to £58,800 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), with additional support of £7,750 from Essex & Suffolk Water Branch Out fund.