Much has been written in recent years about the variety of wildlife which can be seen in towns and cities, and there has been a growing awareness of the value of urban nature to city dwellers. Action is being taken in many places to identify and protect wildlife habitats within heavily built up urban areas. Perhaps the most tangible evidence of this new and rapidly developing commitment to urban wildlife conservation is the growing number of nature parks and nature reserves.
Documentation of practical examples of how nature areas have been established and developed is needed to share experience and help to ensure that mistakes are not repeated. In view of the wide range of initiatives developed in London, the Nature Conservancy Council commissioned the London Ecology Unit to review current practice in the capital.
The object was to identify the ingredients of success which may have wider application. Although the handbook is based on the experience of nature areas in London, the lessons learned will be just as relevant to people establishing and running such projects in other cities, in Britain and elsewhere. They may also be applicable to other community initiatives such as pocket parks in rural areas.
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