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Broad Colney Lakes update

Saturday 14th October 2017

Broad Colney LakesBroad Colney Lakes

Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust has taken the decision to put the land at Broad Colney Lakes on the market for sale. This is not a decision we have taken lightly.

The Trust is largely funded by voluntary contributions from its members, donors and other supporters. We are obliged to ensure that these resources are used wisely and within the remit of our charitable aims. We continually assess the nature reserves under our care, both for their value for wildlife and visitor experience. As part of this assessment we have concluded that the quality of the habitat at Broad Colney Lakes would not be significantly improved by our continued involvement and as such no longer represents the best use of charity funds which could instead be used elsewhere to greater effect.

The Trust has expended considerable funding and staff time at the site over the last 15 years but this investment has not brought the conservation results we had hoped for; this is largely due to the nature and profile of the lakes themselves with the edges being both too steep and too deep. The large-scale litter picking and regular removal of fly tipping have brought additional complications and increasing costs to the ongoing management of the site.

St Albans City and District Council own a small section of woodland which is surrounded by the lakes on three sides and forms part of the nature reserve. The Trust is therefore working with the Council to sell both land holdings together as the areas are so clearly linked.

As part of the proposed sale, which is being marketed by Strutt and Parker, we will ensure that public access is maintained by the new owners. Added to this, the site is listed as a nature reserve in the Council’s Local Plan, providing it with additional protection.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank all the volunteers and other supporters who have been involved in helping to care for this site over the years.