Flying start for Burgess Hill wildflower and bug project

A joint council project has been started in Burgess Hill to improve biodiversity and help bees, butterflies and other pollinators to thrive.

Wednesday, 7th April 2021, 1:58 pm
Lee Barnett, owner of eco2home, has funded the purchase of wildflowers to be scattered in Burgess Hill verges

The Love BUG project in Burgess Hill is supported by West Sussex County Council who will change their mowing regime to cutting once a year every August, to allow the flowers to grow and self-seed,.

Seed has been provided by West Sussex County Council and Burgess Hill Town Council, and Lee Barnett (pictured), owner of the local circular economy shop eco2home at the Martlets Shopping Centre has funded the purchase of some ‘luxury perennial mixture’, including wild orchids, which will be scattered in all the verges.

He said: “When I heard about the town council’s Love BUG project, I knew straight away that it was something we as a business wanted to get involved with.

“At eco2home, we have already pledged to plant 45 trees via the Woodland Trust for every 1 ton of waste that we are unable to recycle or reuse.”

The project was started last week by West Sussex County Council with the stripping of turf on nine community grass verges and the sowing of wildflower seeds.

Burgess Hill Town Council has provided some annuals to make sure there is colour even in the first year.

Lee said: “In the future, we are going to be doing special book sales where all the proceeds will go to local environmental projects such as the rewilding of the verges.”

Locals are encouraged to help water the verges during dry spells, take pictures and to look out for wildlife.

People are being asked to look out for bees, butterflies and grasshoppers, and to record sightings on the iRecord app.

Mid Sussex District Council is taking a more ‘hands-off’, re-wilding approach to various patches around Burgess Hill, roping them off and letting nature take its course, but still mowing once a year.

Examples of such verges can be found in Marle Place Park and along the railway beyond Leylands Road.