Leighton Buzzard is set to grow in size by some 12% over the coming years. This has led to a review of the Green Infrastructure of open space, public paths and the environment around the town. This identified the value of the floodplains surrounding the River Ouzel and Grand Union Canal. Their floodplain character protects them from development, they have a valuable fauna and flora and they bring the countryside into the centre of town.
The Heathlands of the Greensand Ridge project was a partnership project, led by the Greensand Trust and funded by Natural England from their Countdown 2010 Biodiversity Action fund. The project restored and improved the management of heathland and acid grassland areas across the Greensand Ridge.
This project came from the recognition of opportunities provided by the restoration of sandpits in the Leighton Buzzard area to relieve the intense pressure on Stockgrove Country Park and its surroundings, and the need to look more strategically at their restoration. Click here to download the Sandpit Strategy
This project, funded by the Heritage Lottery to collect, recorded memories and photos of local people who work or used to work for the Leighton Buzzard Sand Industry and related tiles, bricks and glass works. Material collected has been archived and made available as a local resource.
The Working Woodland Centre will create new visitor facilities at Maulden Wood and will provide the opportunity to manage woodlands sustainably for conservation and stimulate the rural economy associated with woodlands and woodland products.
it’s Great Outdoors helps break down the barriers that can stop people most at risk from social exclusion, such as older people, young people and vulnerable families, gaining from the benefits that regular access to the countryside can bring.
The Trust frequently works on major long-term projects with a variety of partners. These can be councils, other public agencies, commercial organisations and specialist sporting and other groups.
The role of the Trust can be as a catalyst to help individual organisations work together, particularly when they separately do not have dedicated resources to manage the project work effectively.
The Trust can provide project management,
secretariat and specialist ecological consultancy services, as well as carry out surveys of wildlife and vegetation. Many such projects will relate to an overarching strategy which will be pursued over a number of years.
The main projects will often comprise a number of separate developments, individually scoped and funded from a diverse range of sources.
Some of the present projects in active work are described further below.