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New boardwalk wheels closer to nature

The opening of an accessible new walking route at a popular visitor centre will allow wheelchair users and families with pushchairs will be able to get closer to nature.

Staffordshire Wildlife Trust volunteers, who installed the new boardwalk at the popular visitor centre

Staffordshire Wildlife Trust’s Wolseley Centre headquarters, in Wolseley Bridge near Rugeley, hope the new boardwalk will take visitors on a journey through a lush wet meadow and along the peaceful banks of the River Trent.

The raised pathway was put in place by the charity’s hardworking volunteer groups, and received funding from the Cannock Chase Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) Sustainable Development Fund and Stafford Rotary Club. It marks the beginning of a host of exciting visitor improvements at the attraction over the next two years, which include the opening of a new café and retail area and driveway resurfacing.

Trust Chief Executive Julian Woolford said: “This is a fantastic addition to the Wolseley Centre and will enable people using wheelchairs and pushchairs to get the most out of the amazing grounds we have here. The boardwalk has replaced some existing steps which were previously a barrier for some visitors, and will also mean that people can reach areas that were sometimes inaccessible due to flooding.

“Over the coming months, people will start to see many improvements being made to enrich the visitor experience here at the Wolseley Centre – this is just the beginning.”

Visitors exploring the wetland areas along the new boardwalk can look out for a variety of dragonflies and damselflies, as well as the having the chance of catching a glimpse of kingfishers darting down the river.
The opening of the boardwalk was welcomed by followers of the Trust’s Facebook and Twitter pages. When the charity first shared news about the new facility, the post reached 20,000 people thanks to numerous likes, shares and retweets.

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