Lottery funds exciting pre-history project

Environmental education manager Claire Garrity with a group of schoolchildren at College Lake PNL-150731-103516001

Environmental education manager Claire Garrity with a group of schoolchildren at College Lake PNL-150731-103516001

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A nature reserve near Tring is set to launch an exciting new project about the earth and natural heritage.

College Lake, the flagship nature reserve of the Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust (BBOWT), is located in a former chalk quarry near Tring.

For decades the site, which was a farm before the land was opened up to extract chalk, has been yielding up fossils, prehistoric specimens and geological mysteries.

Now the wildlife trust has been awarded a £74,100 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund to develop a broad-ranging project covering the geology and agricultural heritage of the site.

BBOWT spokesman Christopher Williams said: “College Lake is such an amazing place to learn about geology and how soil creates wildlife habitats.

“For the last 30 years we’ve been collecting fossils and specimens from the chalk, and now we will be able to display these and use them in our education work.”

Earth Explorers will become a central part of the College Lake education programme.

Every year, more than 3,500 children from schools across Bucks, Herts, and Beds visit the site.

When the project is up and running in 2016, it will be linked with the Key Stage 2 curriculum focus on rocks, soils and evolution to give children first-hand experience of the region’s only geological Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).