Sussex behaviour project gets cash boost

25/02/2019 0 By wildfeed
By: Clare Fischer
Date posted: 25 February 2019

A project, led by the Sussex Wildlife Trust, in which MCS is one of five partners, has been given a cash boost with a development grant of £59,000 by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

Fishing Boat
© Steve Wright

We are very much looking forward to using our Community Voice Method in this project to reach deep into Sussex coastal communities

Dr Peter Richardson,
MCS Head of Ocean Recovery

The Heritage Grant, which is money raised by National Lottery players, will cover 72% of the Sussex by the Sea project, about positively influencing human behaviours that are contributing to the decline of marine life off the Sussex coast.

MCS is among four project partners including, Sussex Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (IFCA), National Trust, and Sea Life Centre, Brighton, who will be working alongside the Sussex Wildlife Trust on the Sussex by the Sea project. It will focus on the marine and coastal environmental heritage of Sussex, with an emphasis on the stretches of coastline adjacent to the communities of Hastings, Bexhill, Eastbourne, Brighton and Worthing. The project will centre around positively influencing human behaviours that are contributing to the decline of marine life off the Sussex coast.

Dr Peter Richardson, MCS Head of Ocean Recovery said: “We are very much looking forward to using our Community Voice Method in this project to reach deep into Sussex coastal communities and better understand how people there can get more involved with looking after their iconic coastline, amazing marine species and habitats, and especially their marine protected areas”.

Special marine and coastal habitats in Sussex include internationally threatened blue mussel beds and vegetated shingle which is globally rare. Marine species to be found in Sussex seas include black seabream, the rare short-snouted seahorse and the endangered undulate ray.

Pete Crawford, Director of Learning and Engagement at Sussex Wildlife Trust said “We are delighted to be working together in a partnership with other concerned organisations to protect the sea in Sussex. “The project will work with communities to encourage them to take action and positively impact their local sea and coast. By forging better understanding and changing behaviours we have a much better chance of protecting fragile and vulnerable species and habitats. A big thank you to the National Lottery Heritage Fund and people who play the National Lottery for supporting the development of this project.”

Dr Peter Richardson added: “Only through local appreciation and celebration of the benefits provided by clean and healthy seas will we see recovery of our inshore marine wildlife and habitats, and this project is an important step to help connect coastal people with their Ocean.”

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