How to join in with Save Our Wild Isles
Help halt the loss of nature in the UK by joining the new Save Our Wild Isles campaign, launched by the National Trust, RSPB and WWF
After the success of David Attenborough's Wild Isles, which spotlighted the wonder and fragility of British wildlife and landscapes, three of the world's largest conservation charities have launched a campaign to engage the public to take urgent action to halt nature loss within the UK.
The WWF, The National Trust and RSPB are asking people to “go wild once a week”, no matter where they live. This could be as simple as planting wildflower seeds in a window box or green space, going vegetarian for one day a week, getting involved in local community projects or even writing to the country's leaders to urge them to take action now.
As highlighted in Wild Isles, the UK is home to some of the most incredible species in the world: from puffins to orcas, butterflies and ancient oak trees – and yet 38 million birds have been lost in the last 50 years, 97% of our wildflower meadows have been lost since the 1930s, and a quarter of all our mammals are at risk of extinction. In December, global commitments were made that highlighted we have just seven years left to halt and reverse the loss of wildlife and its habitats.
In a joint statement, Hilary McGrady, Director-General National Trust, Beccy Speight, Chief Executive of the RSPB and Tanya Steele, CEO of WWF (UK), said: “The amazing wildlife and wild places that make the UK so special are being destroyed at terrifying speed. Huge numbers of animals, birds and habitats have been quite literally wiped out in our own lifetimes and we must now accept that without urgent and collective action, our economy, the climate and the stability of future generations living in our wild isles all face a ticking timebomb.”
The three conservation charities have pledged to educate and support businesses throughout the UK on the crucial impact business plays throughout the natural world, providing tools and guidance on how to take positive action.
A new YouGov poll commissioned in February 2023 for the Save Our Wild Isles campaign revealed that 76% of people in the UK are worried about the state of nature. The UK is in the bottom 10% of countries globally for protecting nature, yet 55% people mistakenly believe that the UK is on a par with the rest of the world – or even doing better.
“Nature underpins everything that makes our lives possible – from the air we breathe, to the clean water we drink, to the food we eat,” continues the joint statement. “It is our life-support system, and it’s clear that nature’s recovery, and the desire to reverse the harm we have inflicted over the last two centuries, are issues that unite us all. Together, we can save our wild isles.
“It is a massive challenge, and we need to act fast, but there is hope. The science is clear about what we need to do and there are already amazing people transforming farms, businesses, coasts, urban spaces, transport networks, energy supplies and communities for nature. We just need much more of it.”
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Want to get involved? Sign up for advice, guidance and news on how you can take part in the campaign at saveourwildisles.org.uk.
The BBC is not involved in the Save Our Wild Isles campaign and it is separate to BBC’s latest nature series, Wild Isles.
Main image credit: Wildflower margins at RSPB Hope Farm, Cambridgeshire, June 12th 2022/Credit: Ben Andrew/rspb-images.com
Tanya Jackson is a digital editor and writer for countryfile.com. She lives in Wiltshire and loves campfire cooking, swimming in the sea, rural folklore, barn owls and walking her Welsh collie in the misty hills. Tanya also has a passion for English food and drink – although nothing tastes as good as tomato soup out of a thermos on a crisp woodland walk.
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