Fenland nature reserve seeks volunteers to help extend haven in memory of Warboys mother
PUBLISHED: 17:11 07 January 2020 | UPDATED: 17:23 07 January 2020
A nature reserve in Warboys created in memory of a mother who tragically drowned when her car was submerged in a drain is to extend its haven for wildlife.
Madeleine Parnwell, 68, was unable to escape from her Volvo car at a waterway off Puddock Road on December 13 2017.
Her family launched a £15,000 Crowdfunding campaign to create a nature reserve as a living memorial to her shortly after her death.
Madeleine's Patch now aims to extend its wildlife corridors within the reserve to link it with other surrounding habitats with the help of hedge-planting volunteers.
Madeleine's husband Steve, a former Cambridgeshire police chief superintendent and wildlife officer, said: "The reserve is going from strength-to-strength as it enters its second year.
"The wildflower meadow is already growing good strong wildflowers which are attracting pollinators and other insects.
"Bird and mammals are also visiting The Patch in good numbers and many more are expected to colonise as the habitats consolidate and mature."
The Patch was recently nominated for an award from the Association of Local Government Ecologists (ALGE).
They have also secured a grant of free trees and shrubs from the Woodland Trust.
"The success is due in no small measure to the generous support, both financial and practical we have received from friends and well-wishers but there is still much more to do," Steve said.
"We are starting the New Year with a hedge planting day and more volunteers are requested to come along and help.
"The hedges will soon transform the local landscape providing food, shelter and nesting habitats for a myriad of wildlife.
"Trees and hedges also lock up carbon, thereby helping the environment with climate change."
Madeleine was a keen environmentalist and the 1.3 acre reserve close to her home has become a community and learning resource.
The planting session will take place on January 11 2020 at 9am, First Turf Fen, in Warboys.
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Anyone who would like to help should contact Steve on 07786 443802.