Workmates pull out the stops to help Malmesbury nature reserve (From The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald)
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Workmates pull out the stops to help Malmesbury nature reserve
The first stage of improvements at a nature reserve have been completed thanks to workers from an energy firm.
The car park at Wiltshire Wildlife Trust's Lower Moor Farm reserve, near Malmesbury, has been levelled to make it better for visitors.
The state of the car park was often a bugbear for guests because the sandy surface turned into a quagmire when it rained. Sand would also get trampled into the visitors' centre and cars.
Now a team, from Southern Electric Power Distribution (SEPD) has completed improvement works as part of its Community At Heart scheme, which sees staff take one day off to help community projects.
Staff from the firm's Melksham depot arrived with a mechanical excavator and small dumper, loaned by machinery hire supplier GAP, to remove some of the loose sand in the car park to tidy it up and level it out.
Neil Pullen, Wiltshire Wildlife Trust's reserves manager, said: "I am delighted that SEPD have come to our rescue to carry out the much-needed work on the car park of Lower Moor Farm.
"They've removed the old sandy surface of the car park, levelled it, and provided visitors with a better, more appropriate parking facility.
"On behalf of the trust, I would like to thank SEPD for their kind donation of man hours and machinery, and their ongoing voluntary help."
SEPD depot operations manager Paul Gallacher said: "We have done this work as part of our company's Community At Heart scheme, which gives every member of staff a day off work, once a year, to go out and help an organisation in the local community. About 20 people have worked on the car park in all."
The car park was the first part of a three-stage improvement project.
Stage two will include extending an orchard, creating a habitat for reptiles and new areas for visitors. Stage three includes restoring trees and hedges and adding several biodiversity benefits, such as a new pond, better grazing areas for the trust's livestock, and new hedgerows.