Hundreds of churches across the country signed up to a week-long ‘nature count’ which encouraged people to visit churchyards and record what they see and our own St Mary’s was no exception.
It is thought that church land, often uniquely unploughed and undeveloped, could be a habitat for precious and endangered plants and other wildlife.
From June 5 – 13, the churchyard was scanned to record everything we could see – trees, shrubs, flowers, grasses, birds, creepy crawlies, even the lichens and moss on the gravestones.
Record of species
115 species were recordedi n total – 55 different types of flowering plants, a mixture of natives, such as speedwell and herb Robert, and garden escapes which have colonised the churchyard, 23 species of trees and shrubs and 37 “others” such as grasses, lichens, birds and invertebrates. Nothing rare was found but there was a good variety of species.
Making the most of biodiversity data in burial grounds
With over 20,000 burial grounds in England and Wales, it is important to provide access to biodiversity data about plants, animals and fungi. This data can be used to educate and inform decision makers and local people. Understanding the biodiversity value of burial grounds can help protect these sites from development, closure, under management and mismanagement.
- Sites: 20,325
- Sites with records: 5,879
- Species: 9,963
The data collected has been uploaded to the National Biodiversity Network burialgrounds.nbnatlas.org which will help give a benchmark for future surveys and shows how important churchyards are at providing a home for wildlife. For a full list of the species recorded click the record of interest to you:-