25 years. A quarter of a century. Almost a third of my lifetime. That’s how long the CRT has been ploughing its furrow of promoting responsible, sustainable farming. Some of you have been with us, believing and supporting, for the whole time. Others have joined us over time as our voice began to be heard more widely and our message became ever more urgent and topical.
Thank you. You have helped us achieve so much:
- 2,000 acres of farmland that works for wildlife and for people.
- 13 properties in our ownership and protected from damaging farming and management practices.
- Four education centres teaching hundreds of children about sustainable rural life and where their food comes from.
- Amazing redevelopment of Pierrepont Farm, which is becoming a hub for sustainable local businesses.
- A huge range of habitats under our protection: water meadows, grassland, hedgerow, rivers and their banks, woodland… along with the species that make their home on our land: Skylark, barn owl, field vole, and a host of plants, bats, butterflies and bees. We’ve created hay meadows, restored rivers and wetlands, and facilitated the return of the water vole to our lands and our neighbours’.
Of course, as Dame Judi says, despite our successes, our work is by no means over. However much government and others pay lip service to protect the countryside, it – and those of us who care about it – are more beleaguered than ever. That’s why I’m launching an appeal to raise £25,000 for our 25th anniversary, to help us achieve even more in the coming years.
Our future plans include:
- Continuing to engage with politicians and councillors, to get our message out there.
- Continuing to develop the old dairy at Pierrepont Farm, building on its exceptional reputation for supporting craft, food and drink entrepreneurs and the local economy – as a farm should.
- Opening our new education centre and bunkhouse at Turnastone Farm and develop our work to inform and excite the younger generation.
- Continuing the restoration of the wonderful “Drownings” at Turnastone – an archaeologically important irrigation system dating from the 16th Century that’s great for farming and ecology.
- Expanding our red squirrel breeding programme at Mayfield’s, with a new squirrel enclosure to house more squirrels.
I am proud of what the CRT has achieved. We could not have done it without your support. And we rely on your continued generosity to allow us to keep standing up for the farming countryside and its precious wildlife. Similarly, if you know someone who may be interested in donating to the Silver Jubilee Appeal or becoming a Friend of the CRT then please do refer them this appeal and our subscriptions page.
Will you give a donation now to help fund our future plans? You can use donate by calling our office on 01223 262999 or online at www.countrysiderestorationtrust.com/donate
Thank you, always, for believing in and supporting the CRT.
Robin Page, Executive Chairman
Dame Judi Dench has agreed to be our Silver Jubilee Patron.
“It was such an honour to be asked to be involved in this very special year. The CRT was the pioneering charity in wildlife-friendly farming and the biggest tribute to its success is the fact that so many other organisations have followed in its footsteps. I have been privileged to visit several of the Trust’s farms and the work being done is tremendous. In this Jubilee Year, we remember not only those who set the Trust in motion but we look to the future as farming, the countryside and Britain’s wildlife needs the pioneering work of the CRT more than ever before”.