Wild ideas to help ecology

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CREATING a wildflower meadow in Daventry has been put forward by a councillor.

Chris Over, who sits on Daventry District Council, has proposed the project saying it could help wildlife, provide a pleasant place for people to go, and could involve schools and the wider community.

Cllr Over said: “Concern has been expressed nationally about the decrease in bees, moths and butterflies, the impact of modern farming, intense cultivation and Northamptonshire is far from being an exception.

“As a significant land owner, we [DDC] might be able to do our bit to address this issue.

“Land on Borough Hill – perhaps a little remote – or an area of pasture within Daventry Country Park conservation area might be earmarked for such a project.

“An area of pasture within Daventry Country Park conservation area might be earmarked for such a project.”

Daventry Country Park is a designated ‘local nature reserve’ and has a green flag for its conservation work.

In the past four years a campaign, also championed by Cllr Over and the Daventry Express, led to the park and the land between it and the Grand Union Canal being declared a conservation area to help protect it from insensitive development.

Borough Hill is also a renowned site for wild plants, a local wildlife site and scheduled ancient monument.

The hill is characterised as ‘lowland dry acid grassland’ and is one of the few undeveloped or farmed areas of such a type in the county.

Cllr Over said: “An area for wildflowers not only provides a place for those plants, some of which are in decline across the area, but it also provides a habitat for insects like butterflies and bees.

“In turn that can help other animals like birds, dormice, voles and bats.

“I feel certain that such an ecological project would be popular, particularly with our schools and young citizens.

“If we can get schoolchildren, other groups and the community involved in creating the meadow they will also feel they have a stake in it as well.

“Three or four acres, but a small part of either site, set aside for this project preferably at the country park should be ample, and go some way to providing habitat for endangered species and become an area of public interest, not least for our budding ecologists.”