About Durham Wildlife Trust

About Durham Wildlife Trust image

Durham Wildlife Trust is an independent charity and limited company that was established in 1971, originally as the Durham County Conservation Trust, becoming Durham Wildlife Trust is 1988.

Durham Wildlife Trust is part of the federation of 47 organisations that together form the Wildlife Trusts. Each organisation is an independent charity but with shared aims and badger logo branding. The Trusts are membership organisations.

When DWT was established the county of Durham extended from the rivers Tees to Tyne across an area administered by Durham County Council. Subsequent local government reorganisation reduced the area of County Durham and created Tyne and Wear and Cleveland. As a result, DWT today covers County Durham, the southern boroughs of Tyne and Wear – Gateshead, South Tyneside and Sunderland – and Darlington. In 2015, to clarify the geographical area of operations of the Trust, the phrase From Tees to Tyne was added to the DWT logo.

As a small, local charity we rely on the support of our members. Membership enables us to manage our nature reserves, run conservation projects, deliver environmental education activities and provide thousands of volunteering opportunities each year.

Across County Durham, Darlington, Gateshead, South Tyneside and Sunderland no one is working harder to protect our wildlife for future generations.

36 Nature Reserves

Durham Wildlife Trust manages 36 nature reserves from the Tees to the Tyne, encompassing ancient woodland, large heaths, grassland meadows, wetlands and more. Testament to the diverse landscape of the north east, each Nature Reserve requires unique management, including our 12 designated Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).

2 Visitor Centres

Relax and unwind in either of our visitor centres. Visit Rainton Meadows with its award-winning WildPlay area and 74 hectares of ponds, woodland, grassland and wetland habitat or take a trip to Low Barns, a wetland reserve recognised as one of our region’s most important wildlife sites. Both visitor centres have on-site cafés and are open 7 days a week.

Over 8,000 Members

Durham Wildlife Trust is reliant on the support of its members. Contributions from Membership enable the Trust to continue to manage more land as Nature Reserves, to run Landscape Scale projects and to deliver more environmental education. Please help us to continue our work for local wildlife, local communities and future generations by becoming a member today.

250 Volunteers

Last year our volunteers gave us 36,000 hours of their time of their time. Our volunteers play an integral role in what we do, from the management of reserves to helping with administration duties. We are always looking for willing volunteers who share our passion for wildlife, conservation and broadening awareness.

Activities for All Ages

Durham Wildlife Trust runs a packed programme of events and activities throughout the year for all ages, from Wild Yoga to family fun days, Reserve Rambles and more. We engage with thousands of adults and children through our educational programme, our events and projects each year. We work with local communities connecting them with their local wildlife and helping to develop an appreciation of our natural world.

Regular Training Opportunities

As a member of Durham Wildlife Trust you can access our regular training programme free of charge. Our courses range from survey skills, to grassland plant identification, reptile survey techniques, tree drawing and more. Our workshops offer a chance to meet with fellow members and volunteers and are designed to help you build upon your own knowledge and appreciate of nature conservation.

Be Part of Something Big

Durham Wildlife Trust is one of 47 individual Wildlife Trusts covering the whole of the UK and the Isle of Man and Alderney. Together, The Wildlife Trusts are the UK’s largest people-powered environmental organisation working for nature’s recovery on land and at sea. See the graphic below for details on how we are we are working for wildlife. Join Durham Wildlife Trust today and help us conserve wildlife from Tees to Tyne.