London wildlife reserve WWT London Wetland Centre has been nominated for the ‘Britain’s Favourite Nature Reserve’ category in the prestigious Countryfile Awards 2012.
The Centre, which opened just 12 years ago, was transformed from four concrete-lined reservoirs into an urban wildlife oasis by the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust (WWT). Since May 2000, the reserve has attracted over 200 species of bird as well as numerous reptiles, amphibians, dragonflies and a thriving colony of water voles, the UK’s fastest declining mammal.
It is also a haven for people, with many visitors enjoying a relaxing escape from city life.
Sir David Attenborough considers it “a miracle”. He says: “The London Wetlands: it must be very difficult to think of anywhere that’s better in London, with a greater variety of species and wonderful things to see.”
And he’s not the only wildlife broadcaster to be entranced by WWT London Wetland Centre. Simon King says “I’ve known the London Wetland Centre for some time, and it is a unique oasis, I adore it. Its a fabulous, natural, beautiful splash of green and water in the middle of the city.” Kate Humble calls the reserve “an oasis in the middle of London”, and to Chris Packham it “brings to millions of people the opportunity to encounter wildlife up close.”
Martin Senior, General Manager at the Centre, said “We are delighted to be in the running for this award. This means a lot to our team of staff and volunteers who work hard all year round to provide the perfect habitat for wildlife and a great day out for our visitors.”
The top ten nature reserves were chosen by wildlife experts Stephen Moss and Dominic Couzens, and the final decision on a winner now rests with the public.
You can vote for WWT London Wetland Centre to win by visiting www.countryfile.com/awardsvote .
Other categories include the nation’s favourite regional dish, Britain’s favourite market town, Favourite countryside TV presenter and Best conservation project. Voting closes on 1 June 2012.
WWT is also delighted that another of its Wetland Centres, WWT Caerlaverock, in Dumfriesshire, has also been included in the nominations.
Image – Berkeley Homes.