Following the country’s move into Step 2 of the Covid Recovery Plan, Naturezones has reopened again. Angela Hewitt shares the background to Naturezones and what you can expect during a visit. Ed
Naturezones is the brain child of Angela Hewitt, a former Independent councillor for the Osborne Ward 1998 – 2001.
I hated being a councillor I felt as if I was constantly talking to a brick wall. I realised I had more important things to do with my life so did not stand for re-election.
Bringing a 20-year dream to life
In 2017 I had the opportunity to bring a 20-year dream to life. A plot of land at Blackwater became available. I had cycled past it many times so I knew exactly were it was.
I raised enough money to buy it without quibbles and was on my way to creating Naturezones Wildlife Education Trust (a not for profit organisation limited by guarantee).
Nature reserve and Wildlife Field Study Centre
Naturezones, over the past 14 years has become a nature reserve and Wildlife Field Study Centre. We have been helped along the way by the Heritage Lottery Fund and other small grant giving organisations such as Sovereign Housing.
And I have to say that writing grant applications was a massive learning curve.
The only one of its kind on the Island
Over the past 14 years we have evolved to become the only one of its kind on the Island. A place where all communities can visit and learn.
My dream was influenced by Sir Peter Scott and a programme that I watched about his creation of the WWT and how he transformed his life and out look into becoming a leading conservationist. He created the Wildfowl and Wetland Trust (WWT).
Naturezones is just ten acres so too small to emulate his world but his world has been my inspiration.
Supporting education and well-being
We support school visits and the National Curriculum and many other group visits. Yoga group, Brownies, Cadets, WIs and other support organisations. Many just come for a feel good day. We run courses in art, conservation and soon Nordic Pole Walking.
We also support the NHS who refer to us people who need support to help move their lives into a better place. We are very proud of our achievements here and have aided many people regain their confidence to get back to work – at the same time they have helped us to create Naturezones.
Popular open days
On our open days its great for parents and grandparents to visit with their children. We give the children a bug pot, pencil and quiz sheet and off they go.
Or they can stay close to the barn and do some pond dipping, while their parents watch with cuppa in hand.
It’s a bit different now. People used to drop in, but now we operate a booking system.
Tuesday and Thursday are for the over 60s. We still believe they need to feel confident they are safe.
Sunday is for all the family.
Other days are for course and educational group visits.
“Be symbolic don’t talk about it show it”
Hilary Clinton wrote some advice in her autobiography passed onto her by a friend – Be symbolic don’t talk about it show it.
For more info visit the Website.
News shared by Angela in her own words. Ed