The Oxstalls biodiversity project partially-funded by the European Regional Development Fund has won a ‘nature-based solutions’ award from the Countryside Charity Gloucestershire (CPRE).
The joint award is between the University of Gloucestershire and Gloucester City Council. It recognises the work of Kevin Farmer, Head of Maintenance at the university, and the university’s Estates team in re-wilding land along Wotton Brook between the southern Oxstalls campus boundary and the northern Plock Court Wetland Reserve.
The project linked these two areas of University of Gloucestershire property with a natural verge and meadow and focused on improving the biodiversity of four specific areas on site, by replanting hedgerows, establishing a linear wildflower meadow and widening the bank of the Wotton Brook to create a more varied waterside habitat. The project has improved wildlife habitats and strengthened the ecological links throughout the site.
Chris Short, Associate Professor in Environmental Governance, Countryside and Community Research Institute, said:
"The University is so delighted to receive this award, it shows what can happen through partnership, in this case with Gloucester City Council. The University is serious about taking action by making our campuses more sustainable and resilient to the impacts of climate change. Back in 2007 there were serious floods in this area, including the lecture theatres at Oxstalls and in the surrounding community. This project will contribute to reducing the flood risk. The project has also made the area more attractive and it has been very popular with the local community. There are multiple benefits from changes such as these, as well as providing interesting projects for future students as they monitor the changes and impacts."
To find out more about the project, click here to watch an informational video.