Tuesday, 11 August 2015 00:00

TLC for Marston Marsh from Norwich Fringe Project

Written by  Sara Martinez
Rate this item
(0 votes)
TLC for Marston Marsh from Norwich Fringe Project

One of our city’s natural gems is set to benefit from a bit of extra TLC, as a special work day is planned this week.

On Thursday 13 August, staff from National Grid will join Norwich Fringe Project and some of its regular volunteers in a day of activity on Marston Marsh. Work will include cutting and raking marshland vegetation, to improve the biodiversity of the site. A bench and two information boards, donated by National Grid, will also be installed – to add that little bit more to the experience visitors to the marsh will have. 

For the most-part, the day-to-day management of the marsh  is carried out by Norwich Fringe Project, which also co-ordinates  improvement work such as described above and other initiatives that  improve the site for its inhabitants, as well as makes it more accessible for visitors.

Councillor Paul Kendrick, cabinet member for parks and open spaces said: “The work Norwich Fringe Project alongside the council’s natural areas officer is vital for the life of this special site. And, so much of this is only possible through the efforts of a variety of volunteers who generously give up their time. Our thanks go to National Grid and our regular volunteers, for making this day, and others, possible.”

Matthew Davies, Norwich Fringe Project officer said: ‘‘People are sometimes surprised to learn that places like Marston Marshes don’t look after themselves but actually need a lot of management to keep them in the best condition for their wildlife and visitors. 

Volunteers play a vital part in managing our sites, and we are delighted that National Grid is helping us to further enhance Marston Marshes.  

Anyone interested in volunteering with the Norwich Fringe Project can contact us.”

Andrew Newton, a local network supervisor for National Grid’s gas distribution business, is leading the company’s efforts to enhance the marsh. He said: “At National Grid we are keen to support the communities where we live, work and operate. We are delighted that we can help preserve this precious wildlife site and make it even more enjoyable for local people.”

More about the marsh's wildlife

As one of Norwich’s eight Local Nature Reserves, Marston Marsh is a special site. Something of a wildlife haven, its numerous dykes are home to a host of aquatic flora and fauna, including the relatively rare and elusive water vole.  The grassland habitats are managed through summer grazing by cattle and mowing. Marsh orchids, ragged robin, meadow sweet and other marsh flora give the site slashes of colour throughout the growing season. 

There are five wildlife ponds where dragonflies and damselflies are regularly seen. The banded demoiselle is common in the summer along the riverside paths. 

Summer visitors include various birds such as warblers, while long-tailed tits, jays, green woodpeckers and kestrels are seen throughout the year. 

Geese and the occasional snipe use the site in the winter 

People wanting to find out more about volunteering can contact Norwich Fringe Project by emailing: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or calling 01603 423303.



Last modified on Thursday, 25 February 2016 18:42

Related items

  • Wake up Call

    In 2005 Grice Chapman Publishing, a small independent Publishing House based at Burgh-Next-Aylsham received a script from a gentleman in Monmouthshire who had been trying to get his work published, his name was Ray Armstrong. Ray had seen that Grice Chapman had published books by Hugh Brandon-Cox about the Wildlife of East Anglia and hoped they would be interested in publishing his book on 25 years of keen observations of the rich diversity of wildlife in his villlage. When Ray shared over 100 wildlife photographs, many the result of many hours of patient watching and waiting in all weathers, to accompany a script with a sharp well defined focus, there was soon a book contract heading from Norfolk to Ray's letterbox!

  • Pensthorpe shortlisted for national award celebrating buildings excellence

    The spectacular transformation of five former farm workers’ cottages and the creation of a unique indoor adventure play centre at Pensthorpe Natural Park, near Fakenham, is in the running for a prestigious national award.

    Pensthorpe’s management team has been invited to the grand final of the Local Authority Building Control Awards at London’s Westminster Park Plaza in November, having won Best Inclusive Building at the East Anglian regional finals.

  • Recycled Beer Barrels are New Dog Watering Stations at Fairhaven

    Old beer barrels have been recycled to provide new dog watering stations at Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden, South Walsham. Two have been set up so far, near the tearoom and down by the staithe next to Fairhaven's broad, with a third watering station coming soon.

    Visitor Peter Brough's dog, Pippa, sampled the new watering station. “It's the first time we have visited Fairhaven. We are from Brownhills in the West Midlands and have travelled over for a short break before our niece, Emma's graduation day at UEA."

  • Holt Country Park, Sadler’s Wood and Pretty Corner Woods among UK's best open spaces

    Holt Country Park, Sadler’s Wood, near North Walsham, and Pretty Corner Woods, near Sheringham, have again been named amongst the best open spaces in the UK, winning the right to fly the prestigious Green Flag for 2017/18.

    This is the thirteenth year in a row that Holt Country Park has been able to fly the Green Flag, which denotes a welcoming, safe, clean and well-managed site.

    The award demands year-on-year improvement for the status to be retained.

  • Fairhaven Garden – Common Tern Breeding Platform Success
    Nine common tern chicks, from four breeding pairs of adult birds, have hatched on the new floating breeding platform secured on Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden’s broad at South Walsham. Last year one pair bred with two chicks fledging. 
    Trevor ‘Tabs’ Taberham, volunteer wildlife warden at Fairhaven Garden explained: “Two years ago, just after I started working her, five pairs of common terns tried to breed on the island in Fairhaven broad, but greylag geese wrecked the nests. So last year, we experimented with a single standard size pallet, attached to posts that are in middle of the broad. It attracted two pairs of common terns; one pair stayed to nest, three chicks fledged, but unfortunately one was taken by a Herring gull.”