Somerset Wildlife Trust are delighted to be launching a brand new initiative in partnership with the Diocese of Bath & Wells called Wilder Churches. The initiative will see the two organisations come together to support communities to protect biodiversity in their local churchyard or other church land and work together to find ways to increase the value of these special places for wildlife.
Churchyards are often the oldest enclosed piece of land in a parish and many still support a rich variety of wildflowers and wildlife, having remained unscathed from the widespread loss of habitats seen in the wider countryside due to changing land management practices. Many churchyards support wildflower-rich grassland areas, ancient trees and other nooks and crannies that offer homes for invertebrates - food for birds, reptiles and mammals - and are home to many species of bat. Other churchyards, although ‘green’, support less biodiversity, but there is great potential to turn this around and help churchyards become special places for wildlife as well as for people.