Cirencester College are pursuing a dream of creating a wild campus that connects three educational sites to nature and the surrounding countryside. Cirencester College is working in partnership with Cirencester Deer Park School and the Royal Agricultural University to pursue the project.
The College’s goals for the Wild Campus project are to:
- Promote biodiversity on our campus by establishing, improving and sustaining habitats and wildlife corridors
- Provide a great, green environment for our students and staff creating new outdoor spaces and enabling them to connect to nature, boost their well-being and encourage them to explore the countryside and parkland surrounding our site.
- Provide placement, project and enrichment activities for our students and staff and showcase our environmental provision
- Reinforce our reputation as a great place to study and establish the campus as a natural asset in the area.
In conjunction with the Land and Wildlife students, Cirencester College Environment club have begun preparing a strip of land on the college field for rewilding with native wildflowers. Land and Wildlife students began the project by strimming the area of the old plants and leaving the cut sections to loosen their seeds into the soil. The Environment Club students have also been busy litter picking and recycling.
Lecturer in Animal Management Kimberley Monahan says that “Environment Club has been the perfect way to get students outdoors and interested in what there is around them, it also serves as an outlet for creative thinking and project management. The students are very excited to be part of the Wild Campus project and are already putting in proposals for the next stages”
Amber Cavanagh and Angela Russell, both Animal Management students who have litter picked, said: “It was great to be at one with nature and it was a bit like a treasure hunt at times! We’re glad we are doing something for future students and although we may not see the wildflowers before we leave college, it’s good to be part of something bigger.”
The next stages will be carried out by the College’s Land and Wildlife students, who will rake up the cut sections and rotavate the area to prepare the ground. Then the Environmental Club will begin the process of spreading out UK sourced wildflower seeds. Eventually this project will provide an enriching area for wildlife and the College students as well as providing land-based students with an ongoing conservation project
Funding for ongoing projects is being granted through the Wild Campus Cirencester Enterprise. The staff and students of the college are looking forward to seeing how the project will transform the College environment.