Wild Ipswich & Sidegate Primary School

Whilst at its very beginnings, Wild Ipswich is a group of organisations that have come together through their common goal of reducing biodiversity loss in and around Ipswich. One of our first collaborative projects is with Sidegate Primary School, located near the centre of Ipswich.

We are working with the school to help raise awareness about the importance of our towns for wildlife and easy actions everyone can take to help! We will be helping improve the grounds for wildlife, as well as running activities that will enable the students to see how the school fits into the wider landscape, and what actions can be taken at home to improve their own gardens too.

Early this year an assembly was ran to launch the project, and with great success! The purpose of the assembly was to encourage students to become Wildlife Ambassadors, who will receive training by the Wildlife Ipswich group, and who will then feed this back to the rest of their class. There was huge interest, with over 120 applicants for the roles. Head mistress Wendy whittled this down to 60, who we interviewed today. It was brilliant to see so many enthusiastic students chatting about wildlife and how they could help the wild creatures they see in their school grounds and gardens at home.

Our hedgehog project demonstrates the importance of connectivity across our towns, and one of our activities will involve designing and creating informative posters for students to distribute to their neighbors to encourage hedgehog action. Children will be able to see how hedgehog friendly the streets are becoming by marking their neighbours action on a large map of the school grounds and surrounding streets.

We will also be working with the ambassadors to plant trees, create bug habitat, nesting areas, wildlife houses, meadow strips and refugia sites. We will be exploring wildlife areas in Ipswich to see how their school fits into the larger landscape, with our first excursion being to Holywells Park. We hope this will encourage ambassadors to think about how these green areas are managed for wildlife and how similar actions could be taken at school or at home.

Stay tuned for more updates about ambassadors and our activities to help our local urban wildlife!