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AONB: Dorset

Wild Purbeck Nature Improvement

Wild Purbeck Nature Improvement project has restored 467ha heathland, created a 7ha saline lagoon, created or managed 89ha new woodland and protected 25ha of lapwing nesting habitat. The Wild Purbeck NIA bid was co-ordinated and managed by the Dorset AONB. 

The overall breadth of the scheme was wide, including land management and advisory services, community engagement, building resilience through strategic planning and research and developing the green economy. The focus of much of the work was on heathland, although a mosaic of other habitats also benefited. Key achievements included the following:

  • 467 Ha heathland restored or managed
  • 342 Ha heathland grazing unit established
  • 124 Ha land purchased and safeguarded for the future
  • 7 Ha saline lagoon created
  • 19 Ha new wet woodland created and 89 Ha new woodland created or managed
  • 25 Ha lapwing nesting habitat protected

In addition over 13% of the population of Purbeck was engaged in community or education activity

The NIA provided a huge opportunity for Purbeck, delivering a significant step change in biodiversity and landscape improvements: the partnership considered that 10 years’ worth of conservation effort were delivered during a three year period, due to the funding package and additional momentum this generated.

The partnership was broad, encompassing conservation and farming organisations, statutory bodies, and private companies.