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North Pennines Smallholders – As Busy as Bees!

Smallholders throughout the North Pennines are being encouraged to attend an evening meeting in March where they can learn more about hay meadow management, gardening for bumblebees and other useful skills.

The event is being hosted by the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Partnership as part of Nectarworks – a project which enthuses, educates and helps communities to conserve flower-rich areas for the benefit of bumblebees and other pollinators.

Garden bumblebee feeding on a garden plant (Rebecca Barrett).jpg

Garden bumblebee feeding on a garden plant

The smallholder network has been established over the last year, with a series of events and tailored training. The Partnership hopes to enable landowners to learn more about their land and how they can work together to look after it.

Dr Ruth Starr-Keddle, Nectarworks Project Officer, said:
“Through our Hay Time and Nectarworks projects we have worked with a great many people who own or manage hay meadows. 

“Amongst these, smallholders are a distinct group who tend to own small plots of land or small farms that are important for the wildlife and biodiversity of the North Pennines. I have been really impressed with the way that smallholders have come together to share their knowledge, skills and experience.

“We hope this event will give smallholders further opportunities to meet one another, while also getting some advice and help about how they can protect and enhance these really important pieces of land. Attendees are also being given the chance to direct the future activities of the network.

Ruth said:
“The aim of the AONB’s Partnership’s Nectarworks Project is to restore and strengthen the network of flower-rich nectar sources across the North Pennines through looking after and expanding our flower-rich meadows and involving local people.”

The event is being held at The Golden Lion Hotel, Allendale between 7pm and 8.30pm on Thursday 19th March 2015.

North Pennines

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