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Funding for Harrogate nature reserve

[Tuesday 05 June 2007]

A POPULAR nature reserve on the south side of Harrogate is this week celebrating a new stream of funding which will help it extend and develop.

Rossett Nature Reserve, which is jointly managed by a volunteer Friends' Group and Harrogate Borough Council, has received a grant of £7,500 from the BBC's Breathing Places.

The nature reserve was saved from housing development some years ago by the discovery of great crested newts, which are a protected species. Strong links have developed with the next door primary school, Rossett Acre, which also has great crested newts on site.

The land, which now boasts a number of ponds and a myriad of wildlife, is still owned by Taylor Woodrow who have also generously added a further £10,000 to the funding pot.

Dan McAndrew, Harrogate Borough Council's, Rural Strategy Officer, says the whole group is delighted with the news which coincides with the nature reserve's annual open day on 9 June.

He said: "We shall be using the money to develop our management plan to enhance the habitat for wildlife especially our great crested newts and other amphibians. We also want to increase the number of ponds and to improve such things as access for those with mobility problems.

"Our latest addition is the inclusion of an interpretation board to help visitors get the most from the nature reserve. We have also just had approval from the council to extend the reserve to take in a seasonal pond and we have had a hydrological survey done to help us plan how to best develop the ponds for wildlife."

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