Our Nominated Charity
Our nominated charity is the Ted Ellis Trust - founded to preserve one of the few remaining areas of the once extensive Yare Valley swamp, Wheatfen Broad. This is a strange primitive area recognised as a Site of Special Scientific Interest, and we want to help the trust to preserve its rich and fragile ecology. It is, undoubtedly, one of the most important sites of its kind in Britain. As the patron of the Trust, David Bellamy said, "Wheatfen Broad is, in its way, as important as Mount Everest or the giant redwood forests of North America. It is probably the best bit of fenland we have because we know so much about it. That is purely because one man gave his life trying to understand it - Ted Ellis".
As you can guess from the surname, Ted Ellis (Edward Augustine Ellis DSc FLS 1909-1986) was a much loved family member, as well as a well-known writer and broadcaster. He spent a lifetime devoted to natural history and for the last forty years of his life lived with his family at Wheatfen Broad in Surlingham. He was a man who had the ability to communicate his enthusiasm for nature to everyone and we wish to continue this with our support.
When arranging a Norfolk cottage holiday with us we will ask you to make a £1 donation on your cottage booking. Every little contribution helps and with your help we can ensure Wheatfen and its wildlife remains accessible for the enjoyment and education of children, students and visitors like you.
How much we have raised
We have been asking customers to support the work of the Ted Ellis Trust at Wheatfen since 2007, and already £20,000 has been raised, with £15,000 funding the construction of the new Study Centre which will hold workshops for schools and also has room to hold educational talks about the history and ecology of one of the few remaining areas of the once extensive Yare Valley swamp. The money collected has also been used to build a new boardwalk so that visitors to Wheatfen can explore and watch the wildlife safely, and to clear the Thatch Pond which has now doubled in size and has attracted lots of new species.
James Ellis, Marketing Director at Norfolk Country Cottages, said: 'Wheatfen is very important to us, not only for the family connection, but because it represents the beauty of the Norfolk Broads. We are very grateful to all our customers who donated, and we look forward to spending time at the new study centre.'
We do hope you will find the time to visit Wheatfen during your holiday cottage stay. If you do you are sure to witness many spectacles including dragonflies; birds including Reed Warblers, Sedge Warblers, Reed Buntings, Marsh Harriers, Bearded Tits and Cetti's Warblers; butterflies such as Brimstone, Peacock, Small Tortoiseshell and Red Admiral; and also rich plantlife from Meadow Rue, Meadowsweet and Yellow Iris to Valerian, Marsh Orchids and Yellow Loosestrife. Wheatfen is truly a place that enriches all the senses...
For more information, please visit http://www.wheatfen.org/