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News article created on 1 July 2016

Canal project wins Tesco support

A project to create a new nature reserve and orchard at the famous Foxton Locks in Leicestershire has been given a £12,000 funding boost thanks to retail giant Tesco’s ‘Bags of Help’ campaign.

Grafters & Growers Group Grafters & Growers Group

The scheme, which uses the proceeds generated from the sale of carrier bags in stores, donates the money raised to good causes to create or improve green spaces in communities. The project aims to create a family friendly nature garden at the top of the lock flight at Foxton so nature lovers can discover the wildlife living along the canal.

Once the site is cleared of brambles and overgrown bushes volunteers working with the Trust plan to construct a new pond-dipping platform and install three new benches along the canal so visitors can hunt for watery creatures or relax and watch the boats go by.

New haven for visitors

Working with the Grafters & Growers Group and the Leicestershire Heritage Apple Project, the volunteers also plan to plant a number of native apple trees at the site which will provide food for people and wildlife. New signs will also be installed at Foxton to highlight the other interesting things to see whilst visiting this 200 year old site.

Mark Whitfield, from the Canal & River Trust, said: “I’m really delighted that Tesco shopper’s local to Foxton Locks have supported this project as it will transform an area alongside the locks which is currently full of brambles into a thriving nature reserve and learning station.

“We’ll be working with local volunteers and all the apple trees we plan to plant are kindly being donated by the Apple Association. Once finished I’m hoping the area will be teeming with all kinds of insects and wildlife and which will hopefully attract nature adventurers of all ages.”

Caroline Silke, Head of Community at Tesco, said: “Bags of Help has been a fantastic success. We have been overwhelmed by the response of our customers and the feedback has been brilliant.

“This is the really exciting part of the project – seeing the projects coming to life thanks to the funding and we can’t wait to follow the projects right through to the end.”

Voting ran in store from 27 February until 6 March – with customers choosing which group they’d like to get the top award using a token given to them at the check-out in store.