Ownership and management of land and buildings


Roadside Nature Reserve

Public bodies are significant land and property owners and thus play an important role in maintaining and enhancing biodiversity on those sites. The appropriate management of statutory and non-statutory sites, other non-designated land (such as parks and school grounds) and buildings, provides extensive habitat for wildlife and creates opportunities to enhance the area for the benefit of wildlife and local communities.

Practical ideas

  • Undertake surveys on sites to determine presence / absence of priority species
  • Engage with volunteers to do the surveys and practical conservation tasks.
  • Assess buildings for potential to help support priority species such as bats and barn owls.
  • Declare suitable sites as Local Nature Reserves

Case studies


Landseer Park

Ipswich Borough Council and Landseer Park

Over recent years, Landseer Park has been carefully managed by Ipswich Borough Council (IBC) park rangers, resulting in significant gains for biodiversity and designation as a County Wildlife Site. A large number of priority species have been recorded, including bullfinch, skylark, adder and slowworm. IBC rangers have built a sound partnership with local volunteer recorders and successfully raised awareness of biodiversity amongst the public by involving them in practical conservation. This has greatly increased the impact that the small number of rangers can achieve. IBC park rangers work closely with Suffolk Biodiversity Information Service; the result has clear benefits for people and biodiversity whilst IBC is meeting its obligations under the NERC Act.

Martlesham Conservation Group


Martlesham Conservation volunteers

Martlesham Conservation group undertake work on the Parish Council’s birch wood on Common land with the aim of bringing it up to standard condition. Partners in this work include Suffolk Wildlife Trust, British Trust for Conservation Volunteers, Butterfly Conservation and Greenways Countryside Project. This group makes a major contribution towards the conservation of priority species, such as the Silver studded blue butterfly and the adder, by undertaking annual surveys of butterflies, birds and reptiles and supplying baseline data on the health of the populations.

Bury St Edmunds Fire Station


Bury St Edmunds Fire Station

Suffolk County Council is committed to establishing a culture of environmental excellence in its design and build activities. It has developed a policy in relation to new building projects where it expects a standard of BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) ‘Excellent’. The design of all new structures from bridges to school extensions and fire stations aims to incorporate biodiversity features (e.g. green roofs, native tree and shrub planting and bird boxes.) Management of its own land including school grounds, county farms, country parks and picnic sites also ensure that biodiversity is conserved and enhanced.

For example, thanks to one of the firefighters at Bury Fire Station (Paul Turner), its grounds have been improved by creating a nature reserve with a wildlife pond and habitat for beetles and other invertebrates, bird and bat boxes and lots of planted areas.

All Saints' School CEVC Primary School, Lawshall


All Saints Lawshall

Pupils at this school enjoy the benefits of an exciting outdoor learning environment. Children throughout the School are involved in 'free flow' active outdoor learning experiences. Sensory gardens, a vegetable patch, wildlife area with pond and mixed terrain play areas are all part of this stimulating learning space within the school grounds. Pupils have transformed the Forest School site into their own 'eco-village'. A base camp, dens made from recycled natural materials, mini-beast homes and woodland gardens all form an exciting space where pupils enrich and embed their understanding of their local environment. 

“Public bodies are significant land and property owners and thus play an important role in maintaining and enhancing biodiversity on those sites.”