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MPA launches new National Nature Park

National Nature Park

Web-based concept highlights network of quarries restored for wildlife and accessible to the public

THE Mineral Products Association (MPA) has launched its new ‘National Nature Park’ – a nationwide network of quarries that have been restored for wildlife and which are accessible to the public.

The ‘Park’ is a web-based concept which, at launch, highlights a total of 50 sites around the country where MPA members can provide public access to sites with proven restoration success and biodiversity achievements.

 

The 50 sites included in the online resource cover a total of 4,000 hectares, with a range of facilities including nature trails, viewing hides and visitor centres.

Describing the launch of the concept as a ‘landmark moment’, Nigel Jackson, chief executive of the MPA, said: ‘This great industry has hidden its light under a bushel for far too long and finally we are beginning to build a potentially new asset for the UK with this new National Nature Park.

‘It is our aim to double the number of quarries in the network to 100 over the next two years or so.

‘The new Park will become part of the industry’s legacy. This is part of our contribution to what Sir John Lawton was aiming at in the review of England’s wildlife and ecological network: ‘more, bigger, better, joined up’.

‘The minerals industry has already delivered 5,000 hectares of priority habitats through restoration of quarries, the equivalent of at least five Richmond Parks, with a further 5,000 hectares planned.

‘We are, therefore, uniquely placed to contribute to the delivery of national and local biodiversity targets. Our new National Nature Park is part of this story – a growing and nationally significant area that has great wildlife which can be enjoyed by visitors.’

 

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