Popular Chelmsford park, Admirals Park, is to become a designated nature reserve.
The park will be registered as a Local Nature Reserve (LNR) with Natural England on its register of national nature reserves. Chelmsford City Councillors made the decision at a Cabinet meeting held on Tuesday 13 July.
What is a Local Nature Reserve?
Local Nature Reserves (LNRs) benefit people and wildlife. They are places with wildlife or geological features that are of special interest locally, offering people opportunities to study or learn about nature or simply to enjoy it.
The park’s change to Local Nature Reserve status doesn’t impact the public’s continued use of the park but seeks to make a positive impact on the local environment and habitats and enhance and preserve it for the future. This declaration comes as part of the City Council’s Climate and Ecological Emergency Action Plan and the Green Infrastructure Plan.
The Local Nature Reserve proposal was approved and validated by Natural England in December 2020. The Council then held a consultation in February 2021 to get the public’s feedback on the idea. The outcome of the consultation was overwhelmingly positive. In March 2021, a letter from Natural England was received inviting the City Council to make its formal declaration which is what happened at the recent Cabinet meeting.
Jane Houghton, a Senior Adviser for Natural England said in her letter to Chelmsford City Council in March: “Protecting this site and its habitats will allow it to continue to be used and valued by local people for recreation and enjoyment of the natural environment.”
Councillor Rose Moore, Cabinet Member for Greener and Safer Chelmsford, is “thrilled this great news can be announced”. She says: “I must pay tribute to the Parks team for managing the space with a focus on preserving nature over several years, as there is a vital need for connected habitats. We aspire to see more local areas, and especially urban areas in Chelmsford, declared as Local Nature Reserves in the future.”
Find out more about Admirals Park, and more of Chelmsford’s green spaces on the Love Your Chelmsford website.