As a resident of East Anglia I know that along with many other people I often take this amazing National Park right here on my doorstep, for granted. Other times however, I realise just how lucky I am to live slap bang in the middle of it! As an area it holds inspiration for many, including Arthur Ransome (best known as the author of Swallows and Amazons) who set his novel Coot Club here.
The Broads were formed through the extraction of peat and subsequent flooding, and are now the largest nationally protected wetlands in the United Kingdom. They are also a huge tourist attraction with over 100 miles of navigable waterways, several nature reserves and countless paths suitable for walking and cycling. No doubt wherever you turn you’ll spot several ‘twitchers’ excitedly watching the diverse array of birds to be found here. Can you spot the elusive Bittern or hear it’s booming cry that resembles the sound made when you blow across the top of a milk bottle?
This collection of channels, rivers and lakes sits mainly in Norfolk but spreads into parts of Suffolk. It is an area of great scientific interest managed by The Broads Authority, who regularly update their webpage with any urgent environmental news for the general public to be aware of. Of particular concern at the moment is the discovery of a non-native vicious shrimp in Cambridgeshire, Dikerogammarus villosus, that is feared may be transferred into the Norfolk Broads, and the spread of pennywort. Please do get in touch with the Broads Authority immediately if you spot either of these!
Check out the Broads Outdoor Festival running until the 15th May! As a National Park the Broads rely on visitors and tourists to help maintain it and the surrounding villages and businesses. It is a prime location for families on holiday and conservation volunteers alike.
In the meantime, here are a few pictures I’ve taken on recent visits. Enjoy!
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