The University of Reading has secured approval to extend the Langley Mead nature reserve.
Langley Mead is owned by the University of Reading and opened to the public in 2015, since its opening the site has seen an estimated 37,000 visitors per year, with the University offering guided walks to inform the public about the plants and wildlife that is flourishing there.
By protecting this landscape, the University has seen a significant increase in biodiversity, according to recent estimates the number of species has increased from 76 to 125.
Following the success of protecting the landscape, the University has announced plans to extend the site to 40 acres, this will allow the University to work ecological planning consultancy firm EPR to continue to improve conditions for wildlife as well as providing additional green space for the local community.
Nigel Frankland, strategic estates manager at the University of Reading, said: ‘The environment plays a key role in improving the mental and physical health of communities, as well as ensuring the UK’s wildlife is able to thrive for the long term.
‘Covid-19 has highlighted the need for accessible greenspace as a vital public good, so we are pleased to be able to offer even more space for local people to enjoy.’
Ben Kite, managing director at EPR, added: ‘We are delighted to have played a central role in seeing the Langley Mead extension through to approval.
‘Through actions such as hedgerow planting, wildflower meadow management, and pond creation, the University of Reading are set to encourage wildlife to flourish, while incentivising people to spend more time outside in their local environment.
‘The University is continuing to provide a shining example to landowners looking to improve the quality of the natural environment for local communities and the country’s wildlife.’
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