Nobody needs reminding of what a saviour our green spaces have been in recent months, nor how much this same period has helped highlight just how much these neighbouring fields and meadows were once taken for granted.
The time to get reacquainted with nature, has been eye-opening to say the least, and not just in terms of the once overlooked wonders of nature, but also with regards to the importance of protecting it.
On National Meadows Day, the plight of Britain’s meadows has once again come to the fore. As of today, only 2% of the meadows and species-rich grasslands that existed in the 1930’s remain. What is left covers just a minute fraction of the area that it once did, and this equates to a loss of nearly 7.5 million acres. Six million of these acres were ploughed to grow cereals during the Second World War, and in the 40 years that followed, lowland meadows had declined by a tragic 97%.
The problem here lies to a large extent in the subsequent loss of wildflowers, fungi, bees, flies, insects, butterflies, small mammals and birds, not to mention the reduction in carbon storage, and the increase in water retention and flooding risk.
The campaign to Save Our Magnificent Meadows ( http://www.magnificentmeadows.org.uk) has helped to address some of the lack of public awareness about this issue, so for more details on how we can celebrate and help retain our meadows, head over to their website.