Derbyshire Wildlife Trust announced the completion of the purchase of Common Farm, at Nether Heage near Belper. The site will be rewilded to create a “mosaic” of habitats. 

Over 2,000 people donated to the public appeal which was launched last October, contributing almost £300,000 towards the purchase.

A range of donors and organisations provided the remaining funding required to secure the site.   

The local community have been “crucial” to the success of this appeal, with people organising walking tours for potential donors, delivering leaflets and encouraging others to get involved.

The Trust is now “excited” to start working with the community to develop the site as a great place for people and nature. 

Chief executive of Derbyshire Wildlife Trust, Jo Smith added:  

“Making more space at Common Farm will give wildlife the chance to recover, and once regenerated, it will store more carbon and more water, to which will reduce local flooding and help trap nutrients that leach into our river systems. 

“Each and every person who has donated or shared our messages has helped to secure this land for people and for nature.” 

He added that this purchase is “great news” for residents who will be able to continue to enjoy the area and see it become “richer” for nature.

A mixture of grasslands and woodland will provide habitats for kestrels, woodpeckers and warblers, with many more bumblebees, butterflies and flower rich meadows to come throughout the summer.  

Common Farm is less than one km away from the River Derwent and Derbyshire Wildlife Trust’s existing nature reserves at Wyver Lane and Crich Chase, and provides another space for nature within the Living Derwent Forest landscape. 

The site will be managed as a community asset supporting wellbeing programme and it is a way for visitors of all ages to enjoy and understand the landscape around them.