Work begins on new Discovery Centre at Rye Harbour Nature Reserve

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Work has started to build the new Discovery Centre at Rye Harbour Nature Reserve.

On Monday (March 11), Cliff Dean, chairman of the Friends of Rye Harbour Nature Reserve, handed over the key of Lime Kiln Cottage to Alan Leigh, contracts manager for Baxall Construction. The Discovery Centre will be built on the footprint of Lime Kiln Cottage.

Those present on the day included many who have been pivotal in making this project a reality, including Sussex Wildlife Trust

Reserve manager Dr Barry Yates, Alan Martin from the Friends of Rye Harbour Nature Reserve, and appeal director Kim Deshayes.

Other Friends in attendance were Catherine Emmitt, Mike Russell and SC Morgan. The Information Centre volunteer team were represented by Sue and Terry Howard and also present were Discovery Centre project manager Steve Gilbert and Baxall staff, including senior site manager Matt Fothergill, design manager Jenine Sa Andrade and trainee site manager Brennan Drummond.

The Discovery Centre is a joint project between Sussex Wildlife Trust and the Friends of Rye Harbour Nature Reserve.

It aims to transform people’s engagement in, and conservation of, the special natural environment and wider heritage of the nature reserve and will be a resource for thousands of visitors.

Dr Yates said: “The Discovery Centre will make the reserve a more welcoming place, all year round, for visitors, volunteers and staff.

“We are pleased to welcome Baxall on site, and would like to thank everyone who is supporting the project.”

Anyone interested in learning more about the Discovery Centre can request a monthly newsletter to keep them posted about build news, sightings of some of the wildlife at the reserve, and ways to donate to the Appeal. See ryeharbourdiscoverycentre.org.uk for more information.

The Friends of Rye Harbour Nature Reserve is a charity whose 2,000 members support the Nature Reserve’s work through subscriptions and volunteering.

Since 1973, it has part-funded the cost of staff, land purchase, large scale habitat creation, tools, vehicles and visitor facilities such as birdwatching hides and information centres. It also provides events for members throughout the year.

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