New hide unveiled to view Trafford’s feathered friends

28 April 2017

The official unveiling of a new refurbished bird hide and educational signage was held on the 27th April, at Broad Ees Dole, Sale Water Park, Trafford.

Broad Ees Dole is a Local Nature Reserve situated within the urban oasis of Sale Water Park within the bustling district of Trafford.

The area is a refuge from the busy urban sprawl, not only for the people of Greater Manchester, but also for locally significant species such as birds, butterflies and bees.

The event was held to celebrate the opening of the newly refurbished bird hide to the public as well as new educational signage. Restoration works of the bird hide included a new roof, improved seating and entrances.

The project has been led by the Trafford Countryside Management Partnership (TCMP) which was set up in September 2013 and is led by City of Trees and Trafford Council. It aims to involve a wider range of organisations, businesses and communities in managing, supporting and using Trafford’s countryside. 

The project was supported by funding from the SUEZ Communities Trust and Tesco’s Bags of Help scheme.

City of Trees led on new educational interpretation at Broad Ees Dole including a bird ID guide in partnership with the RSPB.

New signage has also been installed around Sale Water Park including walking routes, maps and the history of the area.

Pictured: Broad Ees Dole Local Nature Reserve

Hilary Wood, City of Trees, comments; “This fantastic site is of great importance to both people and the environment.We wanted to give everyone, from bird watchers to families on a day out, the tools to learn more about and enjoy the nature on their doorstep”.

Trafford Council Director within the Economic Growth, Environment and Infrastructure Directorate, Richard Roe, welcomed the completion of this project, saying. “Trafford benefits from lots of attractive, interesting and educational areas of green spaces and countryside and it is important that we work with a wide range of organisations, agencies, businesses and local communities to ensure these are managed so that they can continue to be enjoyed by local people and visitors to the borough.”

Jenny Hackland, RSPB Mersey Valley Project Officer said: "We're delighted to have been involved in developing the new bird identification charts at Broad Ees Dole. There is so much to see there and we hope visitors will enjoy using these fantastic new resources to discover more about the wonderful wildlife that calls the site home."

Mark Thomas, Tesco Corporate Affairs Manager for the North of England, says: “We’re so pleased to be supporting this project through our Bags of Help grant scheme, and to be able to provide essential funding to such a lovely green space in Trafford. So many families enjoy the waterpark, so it's great to be helping improve its respite spaces and educational opportunities.

“Our Bags of Help grants are awarded to groups who are seeking to use and develop outdoor spaces in ways that will benefit their local community. We have three grants up for grabs every two months for local groups and aim to help around 7,000 nationally per year. I know all our colleagues in our local stores are keen to see more projects in the community put forward, so please pop into store if you're interested.”’

Marianne Ivin, SUEZ Communities Trust added: “This project was funded through our Accessing Nature fund and is a great example of how we can get people back into nature and enjoying the wildlife havens that are all around us. Well done to all on the completion of this fantastic project.”

Situated adjacent to the popular Sale Water Park, Broad Ees Dole holds the status of a grade A Site of Biological Interest, and was designated as a Local Nature Reserve in 2003.

Since then, much work has been done to keep this sanctuary open to all visitors, winged or otherwise with the flat wetland area attracting important birds such as Grey Heron, Kingfisher, Cormorant and many more.

City of Trees organises walks for all ages and abilities around Sale Water Park and the local area as part of their ‘Walk Trafford’ project, which connects people with the great outdoors.