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Balsam bashing boost for woodland

A woodland habitat is being given a fresh chance to thrive at Wrongs Covert in Broadland thanks to a group of power workers.

From Press releases - 16 August 2018 12:00 AM

Graham Barton carrying Himalayan Balsam IMG_6078_.jpg

Volunteers from UK Power Networks cleared a large area of Himalayan Balsam from an ancient woodland site near the River Wensum. This invasive species can grow fast and smother native flowers and plants.

The volunteering followed recent work at the same site to restring overhead power lines and ensure reliable supplies for the surrounding area.

Heather Patrick, an environment adviser for the company, said: “As a responsible local employer, we take care to protect the environment as we work. Through UK Power Networks’ ‘donate a day’ scheme we were able to help look after this important and unique natural habitat whilst giving something back to our local community who make use of it through a number of initiatives.

“Himalayan Balsam grows near waterways and is spreading out from the sides of the stream that borders the woodland and it can push out native species. Areas of dappled shade on the edge of woodland are great for butterflies and Speckled Woods were visible as we worked.”

Katherine Harris, owner of the Wrongs Covert woodland, said: “Our balsam bashing season is well under way now. The team from UK Power Networks pulled out a mountain of the plant which threatens to wipe out our reed bed and other important habitats so we were grateful for their work.

“As a working farm woodland, we have developed opportunities for visits by young people not currently in mainstream education for a wide range of reasons. We host workshops and study days for groups and organisations caring for young people with special needs.”

UK Power Networks delivers electricity supplies in the East of England, as well as the South East and London, and encourages all its employees to spend two paid days volunteering in their local community every year.