Updated: Saturday, 14th December 2019 @ 6:16pm

Dreaming of a green Xmas! Manchester welcomes back wildlife with funding boost

Dreaming of a green Xmas! Manchester welcomes back wildlife with funding boost

| By Rosemary Collins

Eight environmental projects in Greater Manchester, including a primary school gardening club and a project to re-invigorate Brunswick estate, have received £12,170 of First TransPennine Express Green Grants.

St Mary’s RC Primary School in Levenshulme will use their £2,500 grant to start the gardening scheme, which will see students plant trees and build bird boxes in the local community during school hours.

John Usher from St Mary’s said that the funding will be a boost to both the children’s education and the local environment.

“We are delighted to have secured funding through the Green Grant scheme,” he said.

“Building a garden will add some much needed greenery to a part of the school that currently doesn’t match the ‘green feel’ of St Mary’s.

“It will also teach the children respect for wildlife and the importance of caring for our environment.”

Chorlton-on-Medlock Allotment Society also received £1,750 to improve the environment in Brunswick estate by planting diverse native trees and shrubs.

They hope to help species such as hedgehogs by increasing suitable habitats like hedges and bushes.

Choel Cartwright of the Society said: “Due to on-going major development work in the area there has been a loss of a lot of green space.

“The funding will allow us to really improve the local environment and let us welcome back wildlife into the area.”

Lancashire Wildlife Trust were awarded £2,488 for the planting of 1500 willow trees to protect the endangered Willow Tit.

Trees for Cities Salford will receive £2,500 to plant trees at St Patricks RC High School in Eccles.

Sustrans Fallowfield Loop Volunteers will receive £2,122 to plant trees and build bat boxes near Chorlton.

Wright Robinson College in Gorton will use their £390 Green Grant to continue building an eco-garden.

Friends of Moston Brook in Greater Manchester will receive £300 to plant trees and Cartmel Crescent Allotment Association has been awarded £120 to build bird boxes in Oldham.

FirstTranspennine Express will give more than £26,000 in Green Grant funding this year to 17 community-based environmental projects on the rail operator’s network in the North and Scotland.

The scheme began in 2008 and has given almost £190,000 of funding to over 100 projects, in collaboration with the Forestry Commission.

First TransPennine Express Managing Director Nick Donovan said: “This year we received a record number of applications, which allowed us to support a wide variety of environmental improvement projects across the north.

“We're proud of the work we've been able to fund over the past eight years with The Green Grants scheme.

“It’s been a huge success in helping to create a more sustainable environment in our local communities.”

Forestry Commission advisor James Anderson-Bickley said: “We are helping community groups plant more than 6,800 trees and protect some of Britain’s rarest and most amazing species including dormice, freshwater pearl mussels and barn owls. 

“Most importantly we are also helping to bring nature and environmental sustainability to our communities.”