Biggest ever nationwide initiative set to restore nature in England

A new initiative to restore the natural world across England – which aims to tackle biodiversity loss, climate change and people’s disconnect from nature – has been launched by Natural England.

The Nature Recovery Network (NRN), led by Natural England, brings government, conservationists, businesses, farmers and landowners together to drive forward the restoration of protected sites and landscapes.

The Nature Recovery Network has set out to restore 75% of protected sites to favourable condition so nature can thrive; create or restore at least 500,000 additional hectares of wildlife-rich habitat outside of protected sites; recover threatened and iconic animal and plant species by providing more habitat and wildlife corridors to help species move in response to climate change; and support the planting of 180,000 ha of woodland.

Deliver a range of wider benefits, including carbon capture, flood management, clean water, pollination and recreation. Bring nature much closer to people, where they live, work, and play, boosting health and wellbeing.

The Nature Recovery Network will also be key to England’s recovery from coronavirus, according to the UK Government. In a recent survey by Natural England, it revealed that the nation’s gardens, parks, woodlands and rivers have played a huge part in helping maintain their mental health during the coronavirus pandemic, with almost nine in ten adults in England reporting that access to nature boosts their mood.

Natural England chair Tony Juniper said: “The natural world upon which we all depend has for far too long been in decline, and now is the moment when we must change our approach, to move beyond preserving what little remains and to embark on restoration at scale.

“Achieving nature recovery is a complex task that can only be realised through partnerships. These are needed to bring together the people who manage land and sea, the different sources of investment and knowledge that we need to make progress, the variety of official policies we have, and to make the most of the passion of the many leaders who are ready to step up to deliver action on the ground.

“Our vision is for that network of organisations and people to create a network of places that will bring huge benefits for wildlife, landscapes and people. It is an ambitious idea, but the fact is that in different parts of the country it’s already happening, and we should take great encouragement from that.”

Images Credit: Justin Tilley/Natural England

Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She writes about lifestyles including sustainable and green living. She also offers content services to businesses and individuals at

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