Churches and cathedrals across the country are preparing for the annual “Churches Count on Nature” event – taking place from 4-12 June – the same week as “Love Your Burial Ground Week”.
This ‘citizen science’ event will welcome people to churchyards and encourage them to record what animals and plants they see. That data will then be collated and shared on the NBN Atlas.
Last year more than 540 activities and events were organised by churches across the country. People submitted 17,232 recorded pieces of data on wildlife they saw, with more than 1,500 species recorded.
Graham Usher, the Bishop of Norwich and lead Church of England bishop for the environment, encouraged churches to start preparing. He said:
“I’m encouraging every parish to get involved with this year’s Churches Count on Nature.
Churchyards and gardens are an incredible home of biodiversity, making up thousands of acres of green oases in every community of the country. Last year, hundreds of parishes got their local community searching for insects and plants in their open spaces.
This is a great outreach programme, and it also helps those working on the environment better understand our natural world. The Church is committed to increasing biodiversity and is currently working to reduce our carbon footprint to net zero by 2030.”
Churches Count on Nature is jointly run by the conservation charities A Rocha UK, Caring for God’s Acre together with the Church of England and the Church in Wales.