Trafford awarded Bees Needs Champion Award 2020

30 November 2020
Image of a bee on a purple flower.

One Trafford Partnership’s Wilding Trafford project has been presented with a Bees’ Needs Champions Award 2020 by the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) 

The Wilding Trafford project has been run by One Trafford, Friends of Parks groups, In Bloom groups and The Conservation Volunteers (TCV). The prestigious award recognises that the project has helped to support the bee population in Trafford by creating pockets of a nature rich areas for bees to thrive.  

In the last three years, Wilding Trafford has introduced better habitats for bees, insects and other pollinators by creating wildlife corridors in a number of existing green spaces. 

Since the start of the project, over £100,000 has been invested into habitat improvement through the green space capital programme. In that time, the borough has seen thousands of new bulbs, wildflower seeds and hundreds of shrubs planted to create wild corridors for bees. 

These corridors consist of wildflower meadows and beds in seven parks in Trafford; Hullard Park, Seymour Park, Longford Park, Turn Moss Park, Lostock Park, Moss Park and Gorse Hill Park. The green spaces within these parks and some highway verges were identified as ideal locations to begin growing strengthened habitats for wildlife. 

With a reduced grass cutting regime the wildflower meadows within these parks will now only be mown once a year; giving the wildflower meadows a chance to flourish and attract bees in the summer months. These parks provide stepping-stones of habitats from the River Mersey Valley towards the centre of Manchester and north of the borough, all the way south to the Cheshire plain. 

One Trafford is moving away from seasonal planting to instead installing perennial plants, which supporta longer lasting season of nectar sources for bees. Thousands of perennial bulbs such as native daffodils, crocus and snowdrops have been planted at John Leigh Park, Victoria Park, Walton Park and Worthington Park. 

Councillor Stephen Adshead, Executive Member for Environment, Air Quality and Climate Change, said: “We are delighted that the Wilding Trafford project has received recognition for the hard work put in by dedicated volunteers groups and One Trafford to create flourishing green spaces for bees. Over the last few years, the Wilding Trafford project has helped to establish a better network of essential habitats and feeding areas for bees. It has also provided us with a better understanding of how we can support the bee and wildlife population in Trafford.” 

Councillor Liz Patel, Executive Member for Culture and Leisure, said: “Bees’ Needs recognises some of the country’s best examples of bee supporting projects; and we’re delighted to also share this with the Trafford public. In some parks and green spaces, we’ve installed information boards to help park users to learn about hidden gardens, wildflower meadows and orchards. Our brilliant beekeeping volunteers are also running beehives in Hullard Park, Turn Moss Park and Longford Park to further educate the public and support the bee population.” 

“With reduced grass mowing, you may also notice that some areas of the park may look little wilder. It’s important to remember that we’re now changing the way in which we maintain these green spaces. This is how we can support the bee population in Trafford and create spaces that we can explore and learn from.” 

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