Britiain’s oldest nature reserve, Wicken Fen, set to be joined to second reserve at Woodwalton

08:18 10 June 2014

Wicken Fen

Wicken Fen

Archant

Britain’s two oldest nature reserves – Wicken Fen and Woodwalton Fen – are to be linked by a new long-distance footpath commemorating a pioneering naturalist.

The joint history of the two reserves is marked in the new name of the 36-mile stretch of footpath – The Rothschild Way.

On June 28 a band of intrepid explorers from the Wildlife Trust’s Great Fen Local Group will walk the newly recognised route for the first time – starting at Wicken Fen and finishing at the iconic Rothschild Bungalow, in Woodwalton National Nature Reserve.

They hope to raise £2,000 for the Great Fen with this inaugural walk.

In 1899, aged just 22, the banker, philanthropist and insect expert Charles Rothschild purchased Wicken Fen – and presented it to the National Trust - to safeguard one of the last remnants of unspoilt fenland habitat.

In 1910 he secured the future of a second patch of unspoilt fenland at Woodwalton Fen, near Ramsey, Hunts. He bought it as his own personal reserve and built the Rothschild Bungalow – a base for his insect collecting expeditions.

His work to protect these special places of wildlife value started the conservation movement in the UK as he drew up a list of 284 threatened wildlife havens and set up the Society for the Promotion of Nature Reserves to go about protecting them.

Dr Adrian Kempster, Chairman of the Wildlife Trust’s Great Fen Local Group and walk leader, said, “We are hoping that people will walk the way for various reasons but also to generate funds for the conservation organisations who are working to continue Rothschild’s legacy at these two very special fenland nature reserves.”

“We will be publicising this footpath both locally and nationally and eventually aim to have it marked as a route on Ordinance Survey maps.”

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Ely Standard visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Ely Standard staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Ely Standard account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More news stories

38 minutes ago
The cannabis that was recovered from a house in Burwell

A Burwell man who cultivated £33,000 worth of cannabis was given a two-year jail sentence, suspended, as well as an £18,000 Proceeds of Crime Order and 200 hours of unpaid community service.

Yesterday, 17:32
Spate of car crime in Ely leads to warning from police

A spate of vehicle crime in Ely has underlined the need for people to check that they are locking their cars, say police.

Yesterday, 17:32
The cast of 'A Night at the Musicals'

A cast of 13 performed a musical showcase in Soham last week in aid of two charities.

Yesterday, 17:12
Logo for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group

The organisation tasked with providing and funding healthcare services across Cambridgeshire has been rated as “inadequate” by NHS England.

Most read stories

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Ely Standard e-edition E-edition
HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Newsletter Sign Up