One of the points Bepton Parish Council made in opposing the inclusion of The Severals sites in the WSCC/SDNPA Minerals Plan was the precious nature of these Heathlands Sites. We also pointed out the apparent contradiction when the SDNPA, in association with WSCC, were developing a lottery funded project joining up, maintaining and restoring these heathlands.
We have now been asked by the SDNPA to help them by completing a survey on, amongst other things, how local people use the heathlands. This is a good opportunity to let the SDNPA know much we use and value The Severals. The SDNPA have sent the following letter to Bepton Parish Council and asked us to publicise it:
“The South Downs National Park contains several areas of rare lowland heath which are valued by many for their beauty, biodiversity and the opportunities they offer for walking, riding and cycling.
The SDNPA is leading on the development of a new project called ‘Heathlands Reunited’, which aims to achieve ‘bigger, better, more and joined up heathland’ within the South Downs National Park. We have received a Development Grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to enable us to gather valuable information about the heathlands and the people who use and value them.
Our consultation at the Secrets of the Heath event in August demonstrated the level of interest and support for maintaining and restoring the precious heathland we still have left, and work is now progressing on a more detailed Stage 2 grant application to HLF.
We are carrying out a survey to provide support and to help inform the next stage of this exciting project.
The survey is aimed mainly at people who live near or visit the heathland areas of the National Park, and aims to gather information on why people visit heathland, what barriers exist that may prevent them from accessing the heaths, how they usually learn about heathland and how they might get involved in their care. You can help us gain this vital funding by taking part in this survey and let us know how you currently use ‘our heaths’ and what might improve your experience of them. The survey should only take a few minutes to complete and will remain open until midday on Friday 17 October.
To enter the survey click here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Heathlands_Reunited
Heathland Project Manager
South Downs National Park Authority
Tel: 01730 819241| Mobile: 07557 853263
South Downs Centre, North Street, Midhurst, West Sussex, GU29 9DH
http://www.southdowns.gov.uk | facebook | SDNPA twitter | Ranger twitter | youtube
Snap up great prizes in the South Downs National Park’s ‘Hidden Gems’ photo competition
Competition closes at midday on Monday 13 October 2014
Find out more at http://www.southdowns.gov.uk/photofilmcomp2014″