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Picture the scene – a former opencast mine transformed into a haven for wildlife and people.

Almost 1.3 million people live within 20 minutes’ drive of the Mead site, in Heanor, Derbyshire, where our Young People’s Forest will take shape.

Our vision for Mead

Did you know

There is already a fantastic network of paths installed at Mead.

Transforming the landscape

Known to have belonged to the Vikings over 1,000 years ago, the site has changed hands many times since. After beginning in the 18th century, coal mining only ended here in 2015. The scarred landscape has been restored to farmland with paths, fencing and the occasional pond, but though it’s now a green and pleasant contrast to its past appearance, the former mine is barren with low ecological value.

This blank canvas has much more to offer people and wildlife. Now that we own the whole site, we’ll plant more than 250,000 trees to create thriving new woodland, fringed with hedgerows and scattered with biodiverse ponds, open spaces and swathes of glorious species-rich grassland.

Water vole eating pond leaves

Credit: iStock.com

Boosting wildlife

We hope this transformation will significantly increase the number and range of wildlife. There is already evidence of badgers and water voles, and surveys show more than 40 types of bird and five bat species.

Trees and wetland at Mead - Derbyshire's Young People's Forest

Credit: WTML

Connecting habitats

Connected with neighbouring Shipley Country Park and Derbyshire Wildlife Trust’s Woodside Farm, visitors could enjoy more than 500 hectares of wildlife friendly and publicly accessible land.

Empowering children and young people 

The Young People’s Forest is a fantastic opportunity to inspire the younger generation on a massive scale. We want children and young people to really engage with the project and feel that the wood is truly theirs. 

This special place will become a giant outdoor classroom for children and young people aged 10-20. They’ll be involved right from the start, planting trees, learning about nature and designing, delivering and taking part in activities. It will be life changing.

You can help

We’re delighted to have raised sufficient funds to secure the entire site in to Woodland Trust ownership.

We have received fantastic support from Pears Foundation, the Pears #iwill Fund, the Veolia Environmental Trust and Biffa Award, as well as Nationwide Building Society and a gift left by a Trust supporter in their will. This funding has helped the project get off to a flying start. Local members and supporters have also played a crucial part.

But to totally fulfil our vision in the long term, creating vibrant habitats and engaging young people every step of the way, we will still need to raise around £685,000.

Donate to the appeal

Whatever you choose to give, donating online is secure, quick and cost effective, so more money goes directly towards achieving our vision for this important site.

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