When you hear mention of the Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust, see our truck or a sign with our name and logo on what does it mean to you?
“In 2016 we uncovered 18 new archaeological sites; these will now join the 14 we already maintain on a yearly basis”
- Do you think of the cows grazing our headlands and coastal areas; or the ancient and historic monuments which can be seen dotted around our islands?
Do you consider the intricate network of paths which weave inland and around the coastlines of our inhabited and uninhabited islands?
- Do you find your mind drifting to beachcombing and beach cleans and educational activities or the wildlife sanctuaries of Annet, the Northern Rocks or the Eastern Isles?
Do you contemplate the Nature Trails, board walks, bird screens and bird hides on St Mary’s or perhaps the wildlife safaris, walks and rockpool rambles which take place throughout the year across the islands?
- Maybe our name jogs your memory and you remember what you thought was a long forgotten fact about a special plant or animal species found in Scilly?
Because whatever it means to you, we are involved with all of the above and much, much more….
“In 2015 we removed nearly half a ton of marine debris from our beaches at organised beach cleans”
The Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust is a local, independent charity which looks after more than 60% of the islands (just under 2000 hectares – that’s around 1333 football pitches!), leased from the Duchy of Cornwall on a 99 year fully repairing and insuring lease. This includes the inhabited and uninhabited islands, both marine and terrestrial habitats; most of which are open and accessible for everyone to enjoy all year around.
The Trust is managed by a board of nine Trustees and on a day to day basis the work of the Trust is delivered by a dedicated island based staff team of six. Yes, that’s SIX people looking after 1333 Gorse coated, Bracken and Bramble enveloped, Pittosporum encroaching football pitches!
Our team of three Rangers (Rob, Darren H and Murray) and Head Ranger (Darren M) are “out in the field” in all weather’s completing the conservation, management and maintenance work set out in the Trust’s Management Plan and Work Programme; our CEO (Sarah) and Communications Officer (Nikki) are office based and ensure that the charity is run smoothly and efficiently.
The majority of the work which we complete is financed through time-limited grant funding (90% of our income).
Consequently a large proportion of this work is very targeted with specific outcomes; examples of this are the conservation work that we carry out on the uninhabited islands. Managing, restoring and maintaining habitats to encourage continued breeding of ground and burrow nesting birds or the management of invasive plant species such as Pittosporum, Gorse, Bracken and Bramble, since the cessation of grazing, to recreate and manage the habitats needed for our smaller, rarer plant species and animals to thrive, i.e. the Dwarf pansy, Orange birds-foot and the Least adders tongue.
“In 2016 we cut and kept clear more than 63 miles of paths across the Islands; that’s from Scilly to Lands’ End & back and a little bit more”
The remaining 10% of funding comes from membership, donations and legacies and allows us to carry out what is often considered by our local community and visitors the more visible and “valuable” work; i.e. beach cleans, path clearance and ongoing maintenance of facilities like the boardwalks and bird hides.
Follow us on FaceBook and Twitter to receive daily installments and updates regarding our work and if you aren’t already why not consider becoming a member?
From as little as .60p per week you can support us to ensure that our maintenance work on paths, boardwalks and bird hides can continue and residents and visitors alike can access, safe and well-maintained facilities.