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A special community event at Whittle Hall has been hailed a big success, with more than 250 people coming together find out more about improving the local environment.
Organised by Warrington Borough Council, The Land Trust and Great Sankey Parish Council, the Whittle Hall Environment Day gave the community the chance to discover more about local wildlife, with events including pond dipping and a nature trail.
Local councillors and members of the parish council were joined by council staff to talk to visitors about local issues and services such as waste and recycling, cycling and the ranger service. Meanwhile a PCSO from Cheshire Police, provided free bike marking.
A key issue which Whittle Hall is currently facing is the increasing geese population in the area. The geese are no longer migrating, as the climate is milder and they are very well fed - despite signs asking people not to feed them. This is causing a range of issues, including fouling on footpaths and grassed areas, road issues, with geese obstructing traffic, and poor condition of the duck pond, including island erosion and lack of biodiversity.
The event raised awareness about the overpopulation of geese, encouraging the community to work together to tackle the issue, and advising them on the steps everyone can take.
Kelly Thompson, Estates and Community Officer at The Land Trust, said: “It has been great to work in partnership with Warrington Borough Council, Great Sankey Parish Council and local ward councillors. Together we were able to produce a brilliant day for local people. It was fantastic to see so many people from the Whittle Hall community coming together to raise awareness, learn about the local environment and how we can all work to improve it.
“It’s important to the Land Trust that these green spaces can be enjoyed by the local community as well as making sure help wildlife can thrive. Through fun educational activities like pond dipping and a nature trail, we were able to highlight that improving the biodiversity in the ponds is extremely important and that, by working together, we can also help to encourage the natural dispersal of the local geese, which has been an ongoing issue.’
Cllr Janet Henshaw, the council’s cabinet member for sustainability and climate change, who helped organise the day, said: “I’m delighted with the success of the day, which provided the perfect opportunity for the community to enjoy the beauty of Whittle Hall duck pond while taking part in some fun outdoor activities which brought them closer to nature. It also gave us the chance to talk to visitors about the part everyone can play in helping to deal with the overpopulation of geese in the area.”