Pensthorpe toasts to 30 years of nature conservation
One of Norfolk’s largest attractions is celebrating three decades of nature conservation this week.
Pensthorpe Natural Park, near Fakenham, is set to raise a glass and toast its 30th anniversary on Wednesday.
Opened in 1988 as a waterfowl and wetland park, the 700-acre estate has grown to become one of the county’s visitor hotspots, having welcomed over three million through its doors.
Founded by Bill Makins, who transformed the site following a multi-million tonne sand and gravel extraction, Pensthorpe has been under the care of Bill and Deb Jordan since 2002. Mr Jordan is also the founder of Jordans Cereals.
Owner Mrs Jordan said: “From the first moment we set foot at Pensthorpe we were entirely captivated by its uniqueness. The tranquillity, beauty and diversity of this unspoilt river valley site provided a compelling challenge to protect and conserve Pensthorpe for the enjoyment of a growing group of nature lovers.
“In everything we do we try to communicate the beauty of the natural world and to pass on the knowledge of our dedicated team of experts in the fields of conservation, wildlife, horticulture, farming and habitats. Plus being home to thousands of plant, bird and wildlife species we are naturally a hive of activity, which is a pleasure to witness and be around.
“We would like to thank our many visitors for their support and for donning their wellies whatever the weather to maintain a connection to the environment. Without their passion, enthusiasm and sense of adventure the past 30 years would not have been possible.”
The reserve boasts a host of natural habitats from ancient woodland, wetlands, lakes, five gardens, play areas, wildflower meadow and farmland. Nature trails, boardwalks, bird feeding, bird-spotting and pond-dipping are just a handful of the activities set-up to encourage families to engage with nature.
It is also home to the charity Pensthorpe Conservation Trust, which was set up in 2003 to create a centre of excellence in ecological restoration, promote sustainable farming and to research, breed and protect threatened species.
To commemorate the 30th celebrations Pensthorpe is offering 30pc off admission prices on Wednesday, July 11, and Saturday, July 14. There will also be extra walks and talks for visitors.
For more information about Pensthorpe visit www.pensthorpe.com or call 01328 851465.