Barratt Developments North East, which has its City Edge development in Newcastle and Bedewell Court in Hebburn, has teamed up with the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) to launch Nature on Your Doorstep; a project designed to inspire and advise everyone on how to turn their outdoor spaces into havens for wildlife – whether it be a garden, balcony, yard, or community green space.
This project comes after a year in lockdown caused many to rediscover and rejoice in their local nature. In 2020, over 1.7 million people sought advice from the RSPB website on how to make their garden more wildlife-friendly, and in January the RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch saw a record-breaking one million people take part in counting the birds in their garden.
In a recent YouGov poll, two thirds of people in the UK said nature was a source of solace during the pandemic, with more than half of those surveyed believing the pandemic has made them more aware of the nature around them.
The importance of the outdoors to our own health is reflected by the Mental Health Foundation choosing ‘Nature’ for the theme of this year’s recent Mental Health Awareness Week, in recognition of how nature helped people through the pandemic.
With the launch, visitors to Nature on Your Doorstep will now be able to access:
- How-to gardening guides
- Easy step-by-step videos
- Seasonal gardening advice
- An online community dedicated to bringing people together to ask questions, seek advice and share their successes and experiences
The RSPB and Barratt Developments have been working together since 2014 to show how new homes can help nature and support wildlife. Their support has allowed the RSPB to breathe new life into its wildlife-friendly gardening work through the creation of Nature on Your Doorstep.
Over the next three years, the project will continue to grow into a go-to place for gardening for wildlife. The project will host customisable content to seasonal advice as well as conducting research into what drives or prevents people from welcoming wildlife to their outside spaces and investigating how to empower local communities to make shared spaces a home for wildlife.
Adrian Thomas, the RSPB’s Wildlife Gardening Expert, said: “Our local wildlife has been an incredible source of comfort over the past year of isolation and uncertainty, and we’re so thrilled to see people wanting to help nature in return. With Nature on Your Doorstep we want to provide a place for everyone to learn from each other, ask questions, and be inspired to do more.
“Seven out of eight households in Britain have a garden, and that is a huge patchwork of potential homes for nature. To that hungry butterfly, or that weather-beaten bird looking for a place to roost, just one garden can make all the difference. If we all work together to transform our gardens, we can truly revive our world.”
Carl Sobolewski, Managing Director at Barratt Developments North East, commented: “We want to empower people to give nature a home by creating an online community for them to learn and share their experiences. Through our partnership with the RSPB, we are able to share digital tools that we hope homeowners will use to transform their garden into havens that support and nurture the local wildlife.”