Building for the future with the Somerset Climate Emergency Community Fund

Children in Stogumber have been learning about things we can do to combat the impacts of climate change in the village’s new outdoor nature shelter.

The new outdoor learning space is one of 43 community projects that have been funded through Somerset County Council’s £1.5m Climate Emergency Community Fund to help make the county more climate resilient.

Stogumber Parish Council has had funding approved for two projects which will help educate people and encourage them to make important lifestyle changes that will benefit the environment: the new nature shelter, and an initiative to boost the parish’s biodiversity.

The new wooden nature shelter has been built on Stogumber’s Beacon Field, opposite the village hall and Stogumber Primary School and is available for the community to use in all weathers to hold educational activities. 

Pupils from Stogumber Primary School have already been out making use of the new facility. Teacher Josh Wedderkopp said: “This is more than a shelter for the children and the village; it is a base to head for when we plan our nature walks, a gathering point for our learning, playing and community activities, and a welcoming beacon of hope to draw us all together. We use it weekly, in most weathers, and love being involved in its development at the heart of our community’s biodiversity restoration.”

Chris Brammall, chairman of Stogumber Parish Council, added: “The new shelter is the perfect place to motivate young people to become future stewards and champions of the countryside, sitting as it does beside the new plantings of nut bearing trees against the previously planted native woodland area and surrounded by old permanent pasture which has now been augmented with meadow flowers and herbs to enrich the swards.”

Stogumber’s bio-diversity project will see more wildflower, hedge, and tree planting in the parish, new bat and bird boxes installed, and educational material about wildlife friendly gardening and nature conservation introduced. The project also includes creating a new wildflower meadow in the Beacon Field. 

Councillor David Hall, Somerset County Council Cabinet Member with responsibility for Climate Change said: “Somerset County Council is determined to lead the way when it comes to tackling the impacts of climate change, but we also know how vital it is to support people so that they can take action within their own communities. 

“Stogumber’s projects are a great example of a community taking initiative and encouraging residents to play their part in helping the county reach the ambition to be carbon neutral by 2030. 

“It is great to see our Climate Emergency Community Fund being used to turn these aspirational projects into a reality.” 

For more information about Somerset’s Climate Emergency work, please visit: Climate Emergency (somerset.gov.uk)

ENDS

For more information, please contact the Press Office on 01823 355020 or email pressoffice@somerset.gov.uk.

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