Royal visit from Princess Anne marks Suffolk Wildlife Trust 60th anniversary

Princess Anne visited Suffolk Wildlife Trust’s Carlton Marshes Nature Reserve to celebrate the 60th anniversary 

Princess Anne visited Suffolk Wildlife Trust’s Carlton Marshes Nature Reserve to celebrate the 60th anniversary - Credit: Sarah Groves

Princess Anne visited a Suffolk Wildlife Trust reserve near Lowestoft to mark the opening of the new visitor centre, viewpoints, trails and celebrate a milestone anniversary.

The Princess Royal visited Carlton Marshes Nature Reserve on Tuesday, May 11, and unveiled a plaque commemorating the trust's 60th anniversary.

She met some of the key funders, staff and volunteers who have turned the ambitious vision for Carlton Marshes to become the southern gateway to the Broads National Park into reality. 

L/R: chair of the trust Nigel Farthing, HRH The Princess Royal, Milly and Jodie Gooch, aged five and nine, presenting a posy

L/R: chair of the trust Nigel Farthing, HRH The Princess Royal, Milly and Jodie Gooch, aged five and nine, presenting a posy - Credit: Sarah Groves

The National Lottery Heritage Fund awarded a grant of £4.2million in 2018 to create the vast reserve, alongside £1million raised by donations and £1million from legacy gifts.

Another £250,000 was invested through the Growing Places Fund by New Anglia LEP, as well as contributions from Essex and Suffolk Water and Sport England.


You may also want to watch:


The funding enabled Suffolk Wildlife Trust to buy former bean fields and transform them into a vibrant mix of wetland habitats where Broadland wildlife such as otters and kingfishers can thrive.

Princess Anne unveiled a plaque commemorating Suffolk Wildlife Trust’s 60th anniversary on Tuesday

Princess Anne unveiled a plaque commemorating Suffolk Wildlife Trust’s 60th anniversary on Tuesday - Credit: Sarah Groves

A visitor centre with a café was built as well as a network of beautiful trails for walkers.  

Most Read

Christine Luxton, CEO of the trust, said she was "delighted" to have the princess visit and added: “With the challenges of coronavirus, it wasn’t possible to open last year as planned, so we are overjoyed to be at a point now where we will soon be able to throw our doors fully open and welcome people in.

Unveiling the commemorative plaque, HRH The Princess Royal and Nigel Farthing, Suffolk Wildlife Trust chair 

Unveiling the commemorative plaque, HRH The Princess Royal and Nigel Farthing, Suffolk Wildlife Trust chair - Credit: Sarah Groves

"Throughout the pandemic, Carlton Marshes has been a place where local people have been able to walk and escape into nature.

"Connecting people with nature is incredibly important to Suffolk Wildlife Trust. Few nature reserves have a town as large as Lowestoft on their doorstep, and we know from our visitors that it has been a welcome sanctuary for them over the past year.”  

The new grazing marshes and reedbeds are already supporting breeding populations of nationally scarce species including lapwings, redshank, marsh harriers and water voles and with the reserve’s location on the UK’s most easterly point, thrilling birdwatchers with the rarities dropping in on migration.  

Princess Anne at Carlton Marshes Nature Reserve

L/R: Christine Luxton Suffolk Wildlife Trust CEO, William Kendall deputy lieutenant and president of the trust and HRH The Princess Royal - Credit: Sarah Groves

The water-filled Broadland dykes, which bring life to the landscape are teeming with insect larvae, water snails and the magnificent fen raft spider as well as extraordinary insect eating plants.

With 28 species of dragonflies recorded, Carlton Marshes is the UK’s richest dragonfly site. 

Princess Anne at Carlton Marshes Nature Reserve

L/R: Christine Luxton trust CEO, Peter Aldous MP for Waveney, HRH The Princess Royal, William Kendall deputy lieutenant and president of the trust and Phil Aves manager of Lowestoft Rising - Credit: Sarah Groves

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter
Comments powered by Disqus