Contact: Dr. Ellen Rotheray PhD
We will help people learn about wild bees and other pollinators by creating essential habitat for them, particularly in limited space using window boxes in balconies or courtyards.
Please vote for us in Brighton and Hove Tesco stores until February 28th!
We hope to recruit 100 families living in Brighton and Hove to create wild flower habitat and grow fruit in a window box or in tubs on a balcony, roof terrace or courtyard garden. We will also recruit 'Buzzing Balcony Champions', keen and knowledgeable volunteers to help us spread word of the project and help to perpetuate it into the future.
In the UK, 81% of our population lives in an urban area, a figure predicted to rise to 92% by 2030. Many children do not get opportunities to experience nature first hand, and so do not gain an understanding of the importance of looking after our environment, or appreciating how beautiful and fascinating wildlife can be. We propose to give people of all ages just such an opportunity even if they lack large gardens; a chance to learn how plants grow, watch their flowers be visited by bumblebees and other insects, and then to collect the fruits they produce.
Our project is focused on, but not limited to, engaging with families that do not have ready access to a garden. We will provide 'vertical habitat' for pollinators by asking recruited volunteers to create mini wildflower meadows on balconies or in window boxes. Using tomatoes and strawberries, we will also ask children to perform simple experiments to give them the opportunity to learn more about the pollinators that visit and their role in food production. The records our volunteers provide of insects visiting their flowers will also have scientific value, for they will contribute to national data sets on the distributions of our pollinating insects. The project will run for 12 months, however, we will provide detailed instructions for maintaining their wildflowers. Our hope is that we can inspire them to subsequently develop their interests and appreciation of nature further.
There is already evidence that urban areas can support strong populations of pollinators; even in the centre of cities, window box flowers are visited by bumblebees, hoverflies and other pollinators. As the area covered by urbanization increases every year, there is a real opportunity to turn our urban areas into havens for wild insects.
Please vote for us between January 8th and February 28th 2018 in the following Tesco stores:
Droveway, Hove, BN3 6LE
Church Road, Hove, BN3 2DL
Denmark Villas, Hove, BN3 3TJ
Dyke Road, Hove, BN3 6NF
Jubilee Street, Brighton, BN1 1GE
Boundary Road, Portslade, BN41 1GB
Western Road, Brighton, BN3 1JB
Westway, Hove, BN3 8LD
Warren Road, Woodingdean, BN2 6BB
Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XF