20 December 2002 Mill Lane Nature Reserve Leaflet available Walsall Deaf People's Centre and Walsall Countryside Services have recently launched the much anticipated Mill Lane Nature Reserve leaflet. Thanks to the leaflet, local residents can now enjoy a more interesting visit to Mill Lane Nature Reserve by themselves. Alternatively, they can join Walsall Countryside Services on one of the guided walks around the site scheduled for April, June and July 2003 (details to be found in Walsall Countryside's Highlights events leaflet). The Mill Lane Nature Trail leaflet was produced as part of the Mill Lane Project, where local residents were invited to research into the history of the site and surrounding area to develop an information trail, leaflet and interpretation boards for the Reserve, funded by the Local Heritage Initiative. The Local Heritage Initiative is a national grant scheme that helps local groups to investigate, explain and care for their local landscape. The Initiative is a partnership between the Heritage Lottery Fund, Nationwide Building Society and the Countryside Agency. For a copy of the new nature trail leaflet, or Countryside Highlights events leaflet, or for more information about the Nature Reserve, please phone Diana Miles, Senior Countryside Ranger, Walsall Countryside Services, on telephone 01922 459813 or fax 01922 451830. -endsNotes to Editors: Photo opportunities are available - phone Diana Miles, Senior Countryside Ranger, Walsall Countryside Services, on 01922 459813 for details. Mill Lane Nature Reserve is classified as a Site of Local Importance for Nature Conservation and is 1km from Walsall town centre. Nearly 9 hectares in size it straddles Mill Lane, and was used as a rail depot for much of the 20th Century and as a coal or ironstone mine prior to that. In 1991 the site was the subject of a derelict land reclamation scheme resulting in the creation of new wildlife habitats, footpaths, plantations and a recreation area. Since then under the management of Walsall Countryside Services the wildlife habitats have thrived creating a diverse mix of wetland, grass, woodland, marsh, heath and open water. The site is well used by the public for walking and fishing but has never been interpreted to fully realise its potential until now.
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