Nene Park Trust is a partner in this exciting project in our local rural area, which is being led by PECT. Here Jemima Kramer explains more about what John Clare Countryside Vision is doing and about how you can get involved.
The John Clare Countryside Vision seeks to put nature at the heart of our lives once again, as John Clare, the 19th Century poet, experienced growing up in Helpston. It aims to create safe and tranquil environments where both nature and wildlife can thrive, as well as be cherished and enjoyed by the communities that surround them. The Vision aims to double nature in the John Clare Countryside area over the 10-year project, paired with improving and expanding access to the countryside for the urban communities of Peterborough. It also aims to use a variety of arts to engage residents and communities to connect with the work John Clare produced, attempting to bring back the enthusiasm John Clare had for nature, and the inspiration to be gained from it.
The project team hosted by PECT are working closely with 18 Parish Councils in the John Clare Countryside area, bringing communities together to enhance the work of nature. The project is being delivered by a partnership with the Langdyke Countryside Trust, The Wildlife Trust, Peterborough City Council, Nene Park Trust, Sacrewell, John Clare cottage, Natural England and more. Projects include, creating wildflower meadows in desolate patches of grass; planting trees and hedges across landscape fields; adding ponds to wetland areas; restoring rivers that were once imbedded within society and everyday life, and so much more. The Vision encourages everyone, familiar with the countryside or not, to take part and do their bit for nature by volunteering with the John Clare Countryside, helping to create the wonderful landscapes and scenes whilst improving habitats for wildlife and nature. These work parties will be available to attend every week, with a variety of tasks and locations.
The John Clare Countryside team are also cultivating a series of seasonal walks to not only show off the breath-taking areas but to offer a form of self-care, helping to calm our stressful minds and ‘Walk the Winter Blues Away’ to help maintain and improve the wellbeing of ourselves and peers. The first walk will be held at Ferry Meadows on the Saturday 11th December as an introduction to the countryside, edging up to Castor and Ailsworth. The second walk is on Saturday the 16th of January 2022 in Helpston, showcasing the brilliant work of the John Clare Countryside Vision, Helpston Parish Council and the work of our wonderful volunteers on the village’s fauna and flora. The seasonal walks series will not only be held during the winter months in which our wellbeing requires a little more care, but also carry on into the spring and summer seasons to showcase and educate on the visible and miraculous changes nature goes through from season to season.
Please contact Mike Horne at [email protected] to get involved and find out more about the great things the John Clare Countryside Vision is doing!