Meadow sward (c) Paul Lane
We did it!
A very big thank you to everyone who helped to save 42 acres of grassland in the historic Malvern Chase Living Landscape close to Castlemorton and Hollybed Commons.
It’s official, our members and supporters are wonderful!
We took ownership of Hollybed Farm Meadows in October following our most successful public appeal; you donated an incredible £105,000. This combined with gifts left in wills, a grant of £65,900 from the Heritage Lottery Fund and a generous donation of £50,000 from Severn Waste Services through the Landfill Communities Fund.
"What's exciting is the combination of protecting a truly special place and making it even more special by putting back wildflowers and orchards where they have been lost." Rob Allen, Conservation Officer
The highlight of our new nature reserve is Starling Bank - filled with golden wildflowers and grasses. Meadow vetchling, sweet vernal grass, yellow rattle and burnet saxifrage mix with cowslips and wild onion to support bees, crickets, butterflies and myriad other insects. In turn, these are food for all the birds, bats and other wildlife moving through the pathwork landscape of the commons.
A landscape shaped by humans
From the Iron Age to more recent times, the land around Hollybed Farm has been shaped by the growing of crops, hunting and animal grazing. Over hundreds of years, natural and human activities have created a very special landscape with a rich and special diversity of plants, insects, birds and other animals.
Restoring the landscape
By taking seed-filled hay from Starling Bank, planting individual wildflowers where necessary and carefully establishing traditional grazing we aim to bring the fields back to life, filled with the yellow and golden colours of a flower-rich meadow.
We've also plant traditional Worcestershire varieties of fruit trees alongside the remains of a wonderful old orchard on the site. Orchards still survive in fragments across the surrounding landscape we'll be helping to restore another historic, wildlife-rich feature of the Malvern Chase.