Throughout the two previous periods of lockdown during 2020 Devon Wildlife Trust kept its 58 nature reserves open to the public. Now the charity, which has been caring for the county’s nature since 1962, is announcing that this will remain the case during the current lockdown.
Steve Hussey of Devon Wildlife Trust said:
“We were often asked during previous lockdowns whether our nature reserves remained open to the public, the answer was, “Yes”. So during this third national lockdown we wanted to reassure people that our sites will continue to be open and free to use for their daily daily exercise. However, we ask that people follow the Government’s rules – that they stay local and don't travel around the county to visit nature reserves. It's also important that people observe rules on social distancing and mixing. We want people to be able to access their local green spaces while remaining safe.”
The charity, which cares for some of Devon’s most precious and beautiful wildlife havens, says the experience of last year has shown the importance of access to local green spaces in people’s good health and well-being.
Steve Hussey said:
“The comments, letters and social media messages we’ve received over the past ten months have shown us the great value that people place in their local nature reserves. Many people have told us that the ability to exercise in the natural world has made a crucial difference to them. It’s well-known that time spent outside in nature can boost mood, while regular exercise also has the same effect. Green spaces allow people to combine these two things.”
"However, during the current lockdown we have seen some flouting of the Government's rules. For example, our staff discovered people staying overnight at one of our most popular nature reserves. This isn't acceptable."