Let wildlife champions transform your garden

Wildlife Gardening Champions at George Street Canteen's wildlife garden.

Wildlife Gardening Champions at George Street Canteen's wildlife garden. - Credit: Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust

Every garden is full of potential is the message behind a new initiative encouraging residents to create wildlife havens in the heart of St Albans.

Wildlife Gardening Champions has recruited and trained 15 volunteers to provide personal visits and offer free advice on how to make gardens better habitats for wildlife, providing year-round colour, shelter and water sources to ensure the pollinators are buzzing!

The concept is a collaboration between Wilder St Albans - a project led by Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust and St Albans district council (SADC) - and Wilderhood Watch, a residents-led drive to make St Albans friendlier for wildlife and people.

Pond construction at George Street Canteen wildlife garden.

Pond construction at George Street Canteen wildlife garden. - Credit: Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust

This scheme has been made possible by funding through SADC's Health Protection Board.

SADC principal green spaces officer Daniel Flitton said: “This is an imaginative initiative that I am sure will be a hit with our residents.

“It is an excellent opportunity for people to get free expert advice on how they can rejuvenate their garden to the benefit of our wildlife.

“The project is also in keeping with our priority goals as a council of tackling the climate emergency and improving the environment. I’d urge people to get involved and accept the challenge of become a wildlife champion.”

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Consultations with Wildlife Gardening Champions can be arranged for those living on or near to a Wildhood Watch street in St Albans. Initial visits will take the form of a pair of volunteers conducting a 45-minute consultation, looking at how the garden is used and how wildlife-friendly it already is. Then plans will be drawn up and adapted, giving residents a blueprint to guide them as they undertake the practicalities of the transformation themselves.

An insect hotel at George Street Canteen wildlife garden.

An insect hotel at George Street Canteen wildlife garden. - Credit: Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust

Co-ordinator of Wilderhood Watch Nadia Bishara said: “We’re all so proud to be part of this scheme, which will hugely enhance the support we’ll be able to give people on our streets to garden in a wildlife-friendly way. We can’t wait to see the positive impact this will have on all the amazing wildlife we’re so lucky to see in our gardens.”

To see if you live in an eligible area for support from the Wildlife Gardening Champions, visit wilderhoodwatch.org/groups/ or email nadia@wilderhoodwatch.org