£2.6m Lottery Fund boost for the birds and the bees

FERMANAGH’S wildlife is to be better protected thanks to a conservation funding boost to the tune of £2.6 million.
Announced this morning, Wednesday, Lough Erne Landscape Partnership has been granted the investment from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to help protect and conserve the wildlife of the lough over the next five years.
The Partnership, which is being led by the local RSPB, aims to spend the money on 23 new projects aimed at protecting habitats and wildlife, getting the local community involved, and improve access, such as with new trails and walkways. This will all be done over 500 square miles around the lough.
Welcoming the news, Joanne Sherwood, director RSPB NI, said: “Fermanagh is a wonderful place rich in natural, built and cultural heritage. RSPB NI is thankful for HLF support and delighted to take a leading role working closely with partners and the community to make a lasting difference for heritage and people.”
Other areas where the funding will be spent include tackling invasive species, allow native wildlife to thrive, and supporting breeding bird populations such as the curlew.
Head of HLF NI, Paul Mullan, said: “The Fermanagh Lakelands are an area of breath taking beauty, rich in history and culture and treasured as a space for relaxation and enjoyment.
“However the area has suffered from habitat loss and species decline, largely due to the lack of a co-ordinated management strategy. So we are delighted that, thanks to National Lottery players, RSPB NI and partners can progress their vision for the area, safeguarding the landscape and reconnecting people to the heritage of this amazing landscape.”
Lough Erne Landscape Partnership is led by the RSPB in partnership with Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, Waterways Ireland, Fermanagh Rural Community Network, Upper Lough Erne Tourism Development Association, and the National Trust.

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