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Be part of our spring nature diary

Date: 20/03/2020

Update: Keep uploading your diary entries! We’ve extended the deadline so you can now upload your diary entries and any accompanying photos until midnight on Friday 27 March via www.springnaturediary.com

As the nation adapts to a very different way of life over the coming months, AHRC and the National Trust are encouraging people to engage with their own natural surroundings, which can offer benefits to both physical and mental health.

Wildlife lovers across the UK have the chance to contribute to a crowd-sourced nature diary today to celebrate the official arrival of spring - Friday 20 March.

The digital diary aims to capture the start of the season by calling on people to document their observations of wildlife, the weather and what spring means to them in no more than 150 words.

Observations can be made in people’s gardens, in the countryside or even through windows, so those limited by the effects of the coronavirus can still take part.

The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), Land Lines research project at the University of Leeds and the National Trust, who are behind the project, say that nature can offer comfort in uncertain times and are encouraging the public to take notice of the seasonal changes around them.

The project follows a long tradition in nature writing of celebrating spring’s arrival. In 2019 more than four hundred people from the four nations of the UK contributed to the first diary – the ‘Writes of spring’.

Dr Margaret Charleroy, Head of Health and Environment at the Arts and Humanities Research Council, said: “The much anticipated arrival of spring is something that generations of writers have sought to capture as the natural world bursts into life.

“We’re looking for people across the UK to record the official start of this season of change in our second crowd-sourced nature diary, whether the sweet melodies of song birds in a back garden or splash of colour as trees come into bloom.”

The National Trust’s nature expert Andy Beer added: “Spring is the turning point of the year, when we can step outside without a winter coat and feel the warmth of the sun on our face.

“But for many of us, this year’s spring will feel very different.

“In these uncertain times, nature can offer comfort and calm. Right now, wildlife is busy waking up, trees are bursting into blossom and garden birds are singing. Nature is there for all of us – whether we experience it in our garden or local park, or simply through the window.”

People can upload their diary entries and any accompanying photos via springnaturediary.com and share them on social media using #springnaturediary.

Wildlife lovers and budding writers have until midnight on 20 March to submit their entries.

Image copyright: National Trust Images

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