[In February, Jane Samuels – a member of CHEC’s Governing Board – attended the Bristol Pollinators Summit, a regional meeting to design local implementation of the UK’s new National Pollinators Strategy, held at the AT Bristol centre. Below is a press release from the meeting. Find out more about the Urban Pollinators Project at the University of Bristol.]
Bristol Bee Summit – Britain’s biggest ever local bee summit aims to “get Bristol buzzing”
Over 100 delegates gathered in Bristol on Monday 9th February for the largest local summit yet held to help bees and other pollinating insects.
The summit was jointly hosted by the University of Bristol and the University of the West of England, Bristol City and South Gloucestershire Councils, Avon Wildlife Trust, Buglife and Friends of the Earth.
The organisations have already teamed up to produce a draft Pollinator Strategy for the Greater Bristol area. The summit brought together for the first time many of the groups and individuals taking pollinator-friendly actions across the City area. It aimed to join up actions that are already happening and stimulate more. The Summit was chaired by Charlotte Leslie MP (morning) and Kerry McCarthy MP (afternoon).
Cabot Institute member Dr Katherine Baldock, Knowledge Exchange Fellow at the University of Bristol, said “Our research shows that cities can provide high quality homes and food for bees and other insects. But we need to do much more to recognise and safeguard the places they need as well as improve many parts of the city that provide little in the way of food for pollinators. This summit is a major opportunity to do just that”.
Mike Birkin, South West Campaigner for Friends of the Earth, said “Thanks to the pressure from hundreds of thousands of members of the public, the government has recognised the plight of pollinators and come up with an action plan. The summit is a first chance to bring this to life in a local area. The support of two of our Bristol MPs is a welcome sign that the plight of bees is being taken seriously”.
Along with local government representatives attending the Bristol Bee Summit, UK Defra advisors, responsible for the National Pollinators Strategy, took part in the workshops.