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Soroptimists on the Wildlife Trail

Crosby’s Soroptimists celebrated the re-opening of Lunt Meadows Nature Reserve with a walk and picnic.

Cheryl Ashton and Molly Toal of the Wildlife Trust for Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside (LWT) led the group round the reserve. They pointed out new features, such as ponds which will attract a host of creatures, thus increasing Lunt’s biodiversity.

SI Crosby has a long-term partnership with LWT. It was encouraging, therefore, to visit Lunt in all its summer glory.

The reserve has been closed since last winter’s Storm Christoph led to the River Alt bursting its banks and flooding the site. The Environment Agency has repaired the breach.

The Soroptimists have sponsored the twinning of the reserve’s new compost toilet. Its ‘twin’ is a facility for girls at a school in Malawi.

Girls in so many countries miss out on education because of the lack of basic sanitary provision. Many drop out of school completely once their periods start as they feel so vulnerable without a proper toilet. One simple ‘twin’ toilet will transform the lives of so many girls.

Club President Chris Smith presented Molly with the ‘twinning’ certificate.

The Soroptimists saw the site of the welcome centre, due to be built soon. This will provide a base for ‘education’ in its widest sense – a project in which the Club is delighted to be involved.

In the meantime, many of the Soroptimists are ‘nurturing’ wildflower seeds. The mature plants will eventually be added to Lunt’s meadow areas.

One plant that is not welcome is Himalayan balsam, an invasive species – beautiful but harmful to native fauna and flora. Molly’s brief demonstration led to some useful (and fun) ‘balsam bashing’.