Enhancing biodiversity and wildlife habitats is at the forefront of plans to create additional green spaces across a historic market town and neighbouring villages.

The Conservation Volunteers are leading a project for Bungay Green Spaces which is funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

The project will initially focus on enhancing biodiversity and wildlife habitats and public access at Castle Hills, Bungay Castle Grounds, St Mary’s Churchyard and Falcon Meadow.

These sites include three Scheduled Ancient Monuments and a wide range of habitats rich in wildlife, from a rare heathland, to wildflower-rich grassland and scenic riverside.  

Beccles & Bungay Journal: Work at Falcon Meadow, by the StaitheWork at Falcon Meadow, by the Staithe (Image: Bex Cross)

Hidden away in the undergrowth are the remains of a Second World War observation post, Victorian terraced gardens, historic graves and the outer walls of the castle. 

Bex Cross, project officer, said: “It’s a wonderful and important thing- people are working together to care for and protect local green spaces and wildlife.

"We are grateful to our project partners, the National Lottery players, Heritage Fund and of course the people of Bungay for making this possible.” 

The project includes community and conservation sessions, every Friday 11am to 2pm where tools and guidance are provided, supporting people to care for and connect with their local green spaces.  

Beccles & Bungay Journal: Native hedges planted at the Castle Hills with biodegradable starch guards to protect themNative hedges planted at the Castle Hills with biodegradable starch guards to protect them (Image: Jane Vass)

Since the Conservation Volunteers project started in January, the group have been busy planting native hedges at Castle Hills and Ditchingham Hollow Hill, using biodegradable starch guards to protect them.  

They have worked to cut back a section of invasive gorse to rejuvenate the habitat with sunlight now shining through on soil seeded with local wildflowers.  

In addition, the project will continue to work with local schools.

A statement from Castle EAST school said: "Castle EAST pupils thoroughly enjoyed working with Bex from the Conservation Volunteers.

"They had so much fun and learnt how to plant native hedge species with Bex's knowledge and support."