Urban Buzz is an eight city project to create habitat for pollinators. This ambitious new program of activity will work with local people in Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Ipswich, Leeds, Leicester, Plymouth and York to design and deliver flower rich areas to benefit bees, butterflies and other pollinators.
Work here in Plymouth will start this month led by your newly appointed Project Officer Laura Curry. The whole project will run over three years with each urban centre receiving 18 months of intensive support thanks to a generous grant fund from Biffa Award of over £1 million along with support from Plymouth City Council and sizeable contributions from other funders both nationally and locally.
Gillian French, Head of Grants, Biffa Award said: ‘We’re really buzzing about this project to engage people with wildlife in urban areas. Pollinators are vital in any ecosystem and we’re really proud to be supporting this essential conservation work. The team at Buglife have grand plans, and we’re pleased that the Landfill Communities Fund can be used to help them achieve their ambitions.’
The first phase of the Urban Buzz will see project officers consulting with the residents of Birmingham, Cardiff, Plymouth and York on the best places for pollinators and the best places to create new flower rich areas in order to enhance the cities. This initial work will be followed by intensive seed sowing and plug planting to create lush, vibrant flower rich swards.
Laura, Buglife’s Plymouth Urban Buzz Officer commented “This project is the biggest scale urban based project for UK bees and will help create a template that can be repeated across the entire United Kingdom helping to secure a long term future for our vital pollinators. Today the urban environment provides one of the mainstays for our pollinators but increased concreting over of garden and brownfield space is putting increasing strains on species survival, the Urban Buzz will help redress the balance in favour of our pollinating friends who freely contribute £0.6 billion per annum to the UK farming industry.”
Plymouth City Council’s Cabinet Member for the Environment, Councillor Brian Vincent said “We are already making a name for ourselves by being a city that looks after its pollinators. Our wildflower meadows in the city centre were a huge success as well as our innovative bee verges and we are introducing more places for wildflowers and insects to flourish in different parts of the city. This project will help us to keep up the work that’s good for Plymouth, good for people, good for the plants, the wildlife and the planet!”
Urban Buzz will work with interested parties, organisations, landowners and volunteers; any organisation or individual who wishes to be involved is invited to contact Laura Curry on [email protected] or 07464828624.