Published date 5 August 2022

Metro Mayor urges groups to “Bee the Change” as £1 million pollinator fund launched

Metro Mayor Dan Norris's visit to Grow Batheaston to launch the £1 million Bee Bold Pollinator Fund. Pictured are Ali Rogers, Alison Harper (in hat) (both of Grow Batheaston) and Metro Mayor Dan Norris

New grants of between £10,000 and £100,000 for West of England projects supporting the region’s bees are on offer.

The new funding was launched by Metro Mayor Dan Norris at Grow Batheaston this week.

Whether it is planting blooming wildflower meadows in schools, installing bee-friendly green roofs on community buildings or working hand in hand with local people to construct brand-new “bee paths”, these grants will help pollinator-loving groups who are encouraged to apply.

Habitat loss and bee-harming pesticide use mean 35 UK bee species could go extinct in the next few years. But simple steps such as planting trees and wildflowers can make a real difference.

On a visit to Grow Batheaston, Metro Mayor Dan Norris who has pledged to make the West of England the “Bee and Pollinator Capital of the UK” said: “I’ve made bees a priority for the West of England Combined Authority I lead. Bees are quite simply vital to make sure crops are pollinated and we have food to eat. But our pollinator pals have faced a tough few years, so they need a helping hand. That’s why I am delighted to announce this £1 million for projects looking to protect and expand habitats for our food heroes. Together, let’s 'Bee' the change we want to see”.

Grow Batheaston, the Bath charity set up during the first Covid lockdown, has inspired the Batheaston community to plant their very own wildflower meadows to help the region’s food heroes. Thanks to their efforts, over 500 native trees, 50 fruit trees and wildflower meadow have been planted, with the area now home to pollinating superstars including bees, butterflies, hoverflies and ladybirds. They also started their own Bee Club Bee Club for residents to learn how to keep bees and get their very own beehive.

Who can apply?  

  • Volunteer, community groups, and NGOs
  • Town councils, parish councils and unitary authorities
  • Schools and education organisations
  • Youth groups, sports clubs, churches
  • Not for Profit Organisations managing community spaces

The closing date for applications is 18 September 2022. To apply visit: https://www.westofengland-ca.gov.uk/what-we-do/environment/bee-and-pollinator-capital/bee-bold-pollinator-fund/

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