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The Wiltshire Chalk Partnership

Purple and yellow wildflowers on chalk grassland at Calstone and Cherhill Downs on a sunny day
Wildflowers at Calstone and Cherhill Downs | © National Trust Images/Emma Weston

The Trust is a key partner in the Wiltshire Chalk Partnership, a group of organisations and landholders who have come together to help protect and enhance the rare chalk habitats of the landscapes in Wiltshire. Alive with butterflies, orchids and sparkling chalk streams, these landscapes are biodiversity hotspots. The Partnership aims to create an additional 2,000 hectares of semi-natural grassland across Wiltshire and to connect and restore important existing habitats.

Wiltshire Chalk Partnership – An Overview

Home to half of the UK’s remaining chalk grassland habitat and one of the world’s largest chalk river systems, the Wiltshire Chalk landscape is incredibly important for both people and wildlife.

The Wiltshire Chalk landscape ecosystem is not in good health, and the Partnership wants to change that.

With the added pressure on species to cope with the effects of climate change, the Partnership aim to enhance these remaining habitats and create more flower-rich chalk grasslands to provide shelter and food for wildlife.

Read more about the Partnership on the Wiltshire Chalk website.

How the Partnership is helping to protect and expand these rare habitats

The Partnership is working closely with landholders to create a nature recovery roadmap which will highlight where and how new chalk habitats can be created; and how existing habitats can be restored and protected to create a thriving and resilient landscape that will support biodiversity as our climate changes.

Wiltshire is also uniquely positioned to act as a connection between chalk landscapes, and the Wiltshire Chalk Partnership is contributing to the wider ‘Big Chalk’ vision.

Big Chalk aims to restore a mosaic of chalk and limestone habitats across southern England. These landscapes are particularly species rich and together provide an opportunity for wildlife to thrive and adapt to climate change.

How you can get involved

The Wiltshire Chalk Partnership area runs from the North Wessex Downs near Marlborough in the north, down to the Wylye Valley near Salisbury in the south.

The Partnership is asking for farmers and landholders to help map out the creation of 2,000 hectares for nature recovery, which may help unlock the finance and funding needed for delivery.

Want to know more?

Visit the Wiltshire Chalk Partnership’s website to find out more about the projects already underway, connect to the social media pages for updates, or get in touch with the Partnership team.

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