The Green Heart of Poringland


Like so many wildlife sites, Poringland Conservation Lakes relies heavily on support from charitable organisations, business sponsors, friends and volunteers as well as support from other organisations such as local authorities and other public bodies. 

Maintaining and developing the conservation area for present and future generations to enjoy is a costly business – not only in terms of finance but also in the time and commitment our wonderful volunteers give to the site. 

Grant aid is absolutely critical.  It really is a lifeline, so we are delighted that many local organisations share our vision for Poringland Conservation Lakes and are happy to support us through grant aid. 

The following page acknowledges that support – for which the Association and local community will be forever grateful.

Local Charity Aids Fencing Project

A local charity has stepped in to help fund emergency fencing at Poringland Lakes.

Following an approach by lakes' officials, Poringland Fuel Allotment Charity has made a substantial £5,000 grant towards the project which is expected to cost in the region of £15,000.

"This is wonderful news" said lakes president Dave Gudgeon.  “The grant means we can now proceed with installing the fencing and doing the all-important soft landscaping. We are really indebted to the charity's trustees for their generous support.”

The Poringland Fuel Allotment Charity was set up as long ago as 1805, originally to help the poor of the village.  More recently that objective has been widened to provide support for educational projects as well as sporting and leisure facilities in the village.

The charity owns lands and property around the village which generates an annual rental income and allows the charity to make grants.

Grant Boost for Major Project 

Poringland Lakes’ ambitious electricity and aeration project has received a major boost with the news that the Angling Trust has awarded the Association a £5,000 grant towards the five figure project. 

Trustee Paul Bonham, who masterminded the application, was thrilled with the outcome. 

“This is great news and means that we can now make a start on the project” he said.        

The news could not have come at a better time.  Earlier today, fishery manager Mick Morley and a small team of helpers made an emergency visit to the lakes to deploy an emergency pump following an oxygen crash which threatens fish welfare.

The electricity and aeration project has been supported by an award from the Angling Improvement Fund, which reinvests a share of fishing licence income to improvement projects and activities at fisheries. The Fund is administered by the Angling Trust and supported by the Environment Agency.

South Norfolk Grant Kick Starts Electricity Project 

The long awaited electricity and aeration project at Poringland Lakes is set to go ahead after the £10,000 project has been awarded a sizeable grant from South Norfolk Council. 

At yesterday's meeting, the Community Action Fund selection panel agreed to make a full award of £3,404 towards the project. 

The news was excitedly welcomed by project co-ordinator Paul Bonham. 

"This is excellent news" said Paul. "We are extremely grateful to South Norfolk Councillors for their support and especially to local member John Overton who presented the case on behalf of the Association. 

"The project team will meet shortly to finalise the project timetable.  More details will be released soon" added Paul. 

Development Plan Setback

Plans to install a dedicated electricity supply and a permanent aeration system at Poringland Lakes have suffered a setback.

The trustees had applied to the Angling Trust for a £5,000 grant towards the ambitious £10,000 project but their bid has been rejected, at least for the time being.

Explaining the unsuccessful bid, Angling Improvement Fund administrator Chloe Guy said  "The judges were generally positive about your project. However, due to the volume of applications we do not have the funds available to award all the grants at this time and unfortunately your project has fallen just short of the ones we are able to fund.

"However that being said, we are currently in the process of trying to source additional funding in the hope that all projects with a strong case are able to receive the grant requested" she added.

Lead trustee Paul Bonham who masterminded the bid was disappointed but still optimistic that the project would go ahead.

"It's important that we deliver this project for the long term benefit of the site" said Paul. "However it appears all is not lost. We are now exploring other funding sources as well as monitoring the Angling Trust's attempt to gain additional funding." 

Council Supports Family Fishing Days 

South Norfolk Council has given its support to Poringland Lakes’ Family Fishing Fun Days. 

The Council has made a grant of £100 to the Association to help publish and promote the four events scheduled to coincide with school holidays. 

The grant is one of many awarded by the Council to community groups as part of its popular 'Go for It' scheme.

"This is excellent news" said participation sub-group chairman Paul Bonham.

"The grant will enable us to take advertising space in our community magazines ahead of the events which hopefully will attract more participants."   

Last year's Family Fishing Days and similar initiatives, including Free Fishing for Kids’,  attracted 159 new anglers including 121 under-13s.  Equally pleasing is the fact that 37 of the newcomers were women or girls.  

Second Grant from Angling Trust 

Poringland Lakes have received a further grant from the Angling Trust, their second successful bid in less than a month. 

Shortly after receiving a £1,400 grant for equipment and coaching resources for beginners, the Association has won a further £1,500 to provide bespoke fishing platforms, an additional lifebuoy station and safety signage. 

Head bailiff Ray Noble was delighted with the news. 

“In order to meet increased demands, especially from young families, we need to better utilise our facilities, in particular those areas which are currently inaccessible because of the lakes’ contours” explained Ray. 

“We also need to introduce more safety features including additional life-saving equipment and safety signage” he added. 

“This grant will now enable us to do all that work.  It’s wonderful news” said an excited Ray. 

Angling Trust Boost for Family Fishing 

Poringland Lakes has received another substantial grant to enable it to deliver its ambitious Family Fishing Fun Day programme. 

The sport’s governing body, the Angling Trust, has awarded the Association £850 towards equipment and coaching support costs.  The Trust will also provide accredited coach training to level two, taking the grant in kind to £1,400.

The money is offered on strict conditions including delivering 100 fishing opportunities for youngsters in 2017. 

Fittingly the announcement was made by Angling Trust’s regional officer James Lewis as he attended a fishing volunteers’ training session in the village earlier this evening. 

Trustee and Family Fishing co-ordinator Andy Dewar was delighted with the news. 

“The Angling Trust has been extremely supportive from day one.  Last year they kindly provided all the equipment necessary to run the Family Fishing Days.  This grant will now allow us to purchase our own equipment and enable the Family Days to go from strength to strength.”

The Angling Trust was equally enthusiastic about the grant.                

“We are very pleased that you have been awarded this funding.  Congratulations on securing this award and we very much look forward to seeing its results” said Angling Trust Fund Administrator, James Sarkar.

Grant Boost for Family Sessions

On the eve of its annual meeting, Poringland Lakes has received news of a substantial grant from Sport England to help deliver its ambitious Development Plan.

The Association has been awarded £2,685 to support its highly successful participation programme.  Last year 85 new anglers, including 62 under the age of 16, took part in the free angling sessions.

Now the PCFLA aims to increase this by 50% in 2017.  It has also launched the new Saturday morning Kingfisher Club exclusively for under-16s.

“The family days have been an unbelievable success” said Association chairman John Overton.

“This is tremendous news especially as our application has been funded in full.

“We owe huge thanks to James Lewis at the Angling Trust who was instrumental in putting the application together and also to Active Norfolk, South Norfolk Council and Poringland Parish Council for their letters of support.”  

The grant will provide fishing equipment for beginners, training for an in-house coach and publicity for the Family Fishing Fun Days.

See Family Fishing and Kingfisher Club pages for more details.

Norse Funding Will Boost Awareness 

A series of initiatives to develop Poringland Lakes and increase public awareness of the wonderful open space at the heart of the community has been given a grant by the Norse Group in association with the Environment Projects Agency. 

The grant will provide a sustainable water source, a visitors’ bench, interpretation board and exhibition and educational materials. 

Lakes president Dave Gudgeon welcomed the £6,000 grant. 

He said: “We are absolutely thrilled with this award which will not only enhance the conservation area but will broaden people’s awareness of the site and help them connect with it. 

“We are really keen to get more young people involved in conservation work.  Encouraging youngsters to become engaged and passionate about the wildlife in our  community is vitally important” added Dave.

The Environmental Projects Agency (EPA) is an independent environment body that provides administration and project management service to landfill operators throughout the country.  It also provides funding for environmental projects under the Landfill Tax Regulations. 

Norse Group is a dynamic holding company, bringing together facilities management provider Norse Commercial Services, property consultants NPS Group and care provider NorseCare, creating a combined group turnover in excess of £250 million and providing employment for 10,000 people. 

Double Cause for Celebration 

There was double cause for celebration at Poringland Lakes today when Association officials received two grant cheques.

The first for £1,200, was presented by Emma Tooke of Saffron Community Trust to association treasurer George Shearer.  The grant has helped to fund the secure storage unit which now proudly displays the Saffron Trust plaque.

The second grant for £5,000 from South Norfolk Council’s Eastern Rivers Neighbourhood Area will provide some heavy duty machinery and tools.  The cheque was handed over by South Norfolk local councillor John Overton.

Receiving the cheque on behalf of the association, founder trustee Richard Gooderham said:          

“Both grants will make a huge difference.  At present we rely on volunteers bringing their own tools to the site.  Now, thanks to Saffron and Eastern Rivers Neighbourhood Area, we can house some of the routine equipment like spades, rakes on site.” 

Conservation Area Awarded Equipment Grant 

Poringland Conservation Lakes have been awarded a £5,000 grant by South Norfolk District Council. 

The grant, from the Council’s Community Action Fund, supports local organisations who want to improve their local environment and quality of life for the neighbourhood community. 

The grant will enable the Association fund vital maintenance equipment including a rough-cut mower, brushcutter, chainsaw, work boat and aeration equipment as well as a range of heavy duty tools. 

“This will make a huge difference” said head bailiff Ray Noble.  “So often volunteers have to use their own garden equipment which is generally unsuitable for heavy conservation work” explained Ray. 

“Now we can purchase kit that is really fit for purpose which will help enormously in our efforts to maintain and develop the site” he added.     

“Our thanks go to our local Councillor John Overton who really appreciates what we are trying to achieve at the lakes.  Mr Overton has been extremely supportive and was instrumental in obtaining the grant” said Ray. 

Saffron Support “An Enormous Help”

Poringland Lakes has received a £1,200 grant from the Saffron Community Foundation towards the provision of a secure storage container at the lakes. 

At present, equipment and tools are transported to the site whenever needed which requires a considerable amount of manual handling and the availability of a suitable vehicle. 

Now, thanks to the generosity and support of the Saffron Housing Trust, many of those smaller, more regularly used pieces of equipment (wheelbarrows, handtools, netting etc) can be housed onsite. 

So impressed were the grants committee with the work being done at Poringland Lakes that they agreed to provide the full amount of grant applied for. 

“This will be an enormous help” said head bailiff Ray Noble.  “It’s a real job transporting the kit to the lakes.  We can’t thank Saffron Community Foundation enough for their support and financial help which will make a huge difference” he added. 

Saffron Housing Trust, which was founded in 2008, provides practical and financial help so people can improve their community, through projects and events. 

Saffron Community Foundation supports projects aimed at improving the quality of life and well being of groups and individuals in local communities within the local authority areas where Saffron Housing Trust has a presence, including Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex and Cambridgeshire. 

For further information about the Foundation, please click on www.saffronfoundation.co.uk