Rainham Marshes is an ancient landscape of low-lying grazing marsh in the Thames Estuary. The rich mosaic of un-flooded tussocky grassland, flooded short grassland and semi-permanent pools, supports a range of wildlife from breeding and wintering birds, to water voles and rare dragonflies.
To create the right conditions for wildlife to thrive the site requires careful ongoing management and that's where the help of GeoPlace came in.
To ensure business continuity back in the office, GeoPlace was split into teams to undertake the work over two separate days and members of staff donned thick gloves and litter pickers to take to the shores of the Thames to clear it of rubbish and help in the conservation of the local area.
Joanne Sharpe, RSPB Corporate Partnerships Officer, said: "We were delighted to have Team Challenge volunteers from GeoPlace at RSPB Rainham Marshes this autumn.
"The teams were enthusiastic and hardworking, filling two skips with rubbish that had washed-up on the foreshore of the Thames. This effort has not only protected wildlife from harmful waste, but has beatified the foreshore for the enjoyment of the public. Many thanks to GeoPlace for giving nature a home at their local RSPB nature reserve."
The highlights of the day were the find of a letter in a bottle from Germany and a sighting of three seals frolicking on the shoreline for hours!
However more concerning was the amount of waste people had discarded including bottle tops, plastic bags and plastic 'four-pack rings' that were found on the shoreline, all extremely hazardous to birds and local wildlife.
After filling skips with the collected rubbish, including road signs, cones, and a sofa the team were given a guided walk round the nature reserve where they saw the work that the RSPB has completed to transform it into an important place for nature, and a great place for people to visit. Marsh harriers, water voles, ducks, dragonflies and butterflies were just some of the wildlife the group enjoyed.
The team felt the day had been very worthwhile and gave them an appreciation of the scale of the conservation task that the RSPB site staff manage on a daily basis in order to protect the landscape and wildlife that lives there.
Richard Mason, Managing Director of GeoPlace said "Out of all the team challenge options available to staff to choose from, the Management Team were delighted to support the decision to work with a conservation charity for the day.
"As well as gaining an appreciation for the challenges faced by organisations such as the RSPB, the day was an effective mechanism to encourage team building and interaction that also had a positive impact in creating a cleaner environment for wildlife along the Thames. All in all, a win-win enterprise."
Notes to editors:
GeoPlace is a public sector limited liability partnership between the Local Government Association and Ordnance Survey. GeoPlace's role is to create and maintain the National Address Gazetteer infrastructure and the National Street Gazetteer for England and Wales, providing definitive sources of publicly-owned spatial address and street data for Great Britain.
The RSPB is the country's largest nature conservation charity, inspiring everyone to give nature a home. Together with our partners, we protect threatened birds and wildlife so our towns, coast and countryside will teem with life once again. We also play a leading role in a worldwide partnership of nature conservation organisations. Visit rspb.org.uk for more information
The RSPB is a registered charity in England & Wales 207076, in Scotland SC037654
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