From the
organisers of
Hillhead logo

Tarmac gift important nature reserve to local wildlife trust

Oare Marshes. Photo: Nadia Ward
Oare Marshes. Photo: Nadia Ward

Sixty-nine hectares of rare wildlife habitat near Faversham handed over to Kent Wildlife Trust

TARMAC have gifted Oare Marshes, an internationally important nature reserve near Faversham, to Kent Wildlife Trust.

Since 1984, the trust managed and leased the area from Tarmac. Forty years later, the transfer of deeds has made them the proud new owner of one of their flagship nature reserves. Oare Marshes is one of the few grazing marshes left in Kent and of significant importance for migratory birds.

The new ownership has been described as a ‘Marsh Milestone’ by Kent Wildlife Trust, which is delighted to have secured the precious nature reserve for future generations to come. The 69ha of rare wildlife habitat was gifted by Tarmac, with the trust only covering the legal fees.

 

It is estimated that around 250 species of bird can be found at Oare Marshes, including the bearded tit, avocet, waders, and ducks. In summer, the site is home to European turtle doves, little ringed plover, and warblers. Towards the end of autumn, visitors can catch a glimpse of other birds such as, the curlew, sandpiper, dunlin, spotted redshank, little stint, whimbrel, and common greenshank.

Turnstones at Oare Marshes. Photo: Tim Horton
Turnstones at Oare Marshes. Photo: Tim Horton

Oare Marshes is a key stepping-stone between other locations in and around Swale, including Elmley, South Swale and Seasalter (just outside of the borough). The surrounding farmland areas are grazed and managed through agricultural-environmental schemes, with the network of ditches across the landscape providing significant connectivity for species such as the water vole.

Michael Charlton, mineral estates manager at Tarmac, said: ‘Kent Wildlife Trust are a valued partner to Tarmac. Since taking on the lease of Oare Marshes, they have done a brilliant job transforming the site into a hugely important nature reserve. We are delighted to permanently place this site into their care and look forward to seeing the reserve continue to support so many vital species.’

L–R: Nadia Ward, area warden at Kent Wildlife Trust; Michael Charlton, mineral estates manager at Tarmac; Simon Bateman-Brown, head of land management at Kent Wildlife Trust; and Stephen Weeks, area manager at Kent Wildlife Trust. Photo: Nadia Ward
L–R: Nadia Ward, area warden at Kent Wildlife Trust; Michael Charlton, mineral estates manager at Tarmac; Simon Bateman-Brown, head of land management at Kent Wildlife Trust; and Stephen Weeks, area manager at Kent Wildlife Trust. Photo: Nadia Ward

Kent Wildlife Trust’s Simon Bateman-Brown said: ‘We are extremely grateful to Tarmac for allowing us to take on the ownership of this internationally important nature reserve having managed it together for more than 40 years. This moment is a ‘Marsh Milestone’ for this exceptional site, which is a precious habitat for so many important species.

‘Whilst very little will change in terms of the day-to-day management of the reserve, it does mean Oare Marshes is protected for the future.’

 

Latest Jobs

Unit Manager

Heidelberg Materials seek a unit manager for their Machen limestone gritstone quarry in South Wales