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Ambitious project asking for ‘pledgees’ in redistributing land across East Anglia




Three keen conservationists have come up with an ambitious project to redistribute land across East Anglia in the hope it will encourage wildlife to flourish.

Wild East is the brainchild of Ollie Birkbeck, Hugh Somerleyton and Argus Hardy, who all have years of experience in local farming and business, but want to use their expertise on something which ‘gives back’.

They are asking people to pledge 20 per cent of land they own to the project, in the hope of regaining 250,000 hectares for nature.

Wild East are asking people to 'pledge' 20 per cent of whatever land they own to the project.
Wild East are asking people to 'pledge' 20 per cent of whatever land they own to the project.

The coverage area where they are appealing for land covers East Anglia, including Bury St Edmunds, and Hugh said they already had ‘pledgees’ from the town.

He said the idea behind the project was to understand that years of intensive farming had damaged the countryside and meant species of animals were under threat.

He said he had gained much from the farming industry but was now of an age where he felt it was time to give back.

Hugh Somerleyton, is also president of North Suffolk NSPCC. (40423460)
Hugh Somerleyton, is also president of North Suffolk NSPCC. (40423460)

“We have to all accept, and I mean all, that we are all contributors to the precipitous decline in nature consciously or not, and we all need to change to remedy it,” he said.

Alongside the main objective of asking people to pledge land, the project aims to focus on education and accreditation, and hopes by gaining traction among farmers and ordinary members of the public, it will put pressure on government nationally and locally to look at changing their approach to usage of land.

So far the project has had 1,500 respondees but they want more.

For more information visit: https://www.wildeast.co.uk/