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Cley Marshes Nature Reserve

Cley Marshes. © Norfolk Wildlife Trust.
Cley Marshes Nature Reserve on the north Norfolk coast is one of the UK’s finest bird watching sites; worth a visit at any time of year.

The pools and scrapes, all within easy view of the hides, are flush with unusual and interesting birds throughout the year, and both experienced and new birders will be happy for hours here. Meandering along the boardwalks and glimpsing the birdlife through the reeds is pure pleasure.

Highlights: Bittern, avocet, spotted redshank, Marsh harrier, woodcock, huge numbers of waterfowl and waders, Brent geese.

Location: Half a mile east of Cley-next-the-Sea on the A149 coast road. Buses stop outside nature reserve.

Grid reference: TG 054 441.

Adults £4.50, children and NWT members free
Wheelchairs: access to visitor centre, toilets, boardwalk and hides.

The Nature reserve is open every day. The Visitor centre is open late March to early December 10am to 5pm. (Reduced hours March and December.).
Cley Marshes visitor centre. © Norfolk Wildlife Trust.
New Visitor Centre Opens at Cley Marshes

May 2007. Norfolk Wildlife Trust (NWT)is delighted to announce that its new Visitor Centre at NWT Cley Marshes is open. This project was first conceived over two years ago and from the first turf cutting ceremony last July, the building has taken less than a year to complete.

‘Our original timetable estimated that work would not be finished until much later this year, but our project team, led by LSI Architects has pulled out all the stops to finish earlier.’ Said Brendan Joyce, Director of NWT. ‘It has been very hard work, but our various contractors, including Smiths and sons of Honingham, Kings and Barnham, Vincents, Carford and many others have pulled together to get the job done.’

The new interpretation is yet to arrive and there are still snags to sort out with the building itself, but NWT’s Director and small team of staff dedicated to the project were anxious to get the new centre open as soon as possible. The visitor centre is one of the few that contains a café from where you can sit and watch the birds while drinking tea and eating flapjack.

Cutting edge design
The building is cutting edge in design. It tucks neatly into the landscape with its curved green roof and is fronted by a ribbon of glass to provide stunning views over NWT Cley Marshes. It is a showcase of what can be done to be energy efficient and reduce carbon emissions by generating heat and power through its own wind turbine, solar panel and ground source heat pump. It has a living green roof covered with sedum moss and rainwater is collected and recycled for use in flushing the loos. It is believed that with all this technology, the so called ‘carbon footprint’ of the building is reduced by 80% compared to a building relying on non renewable energy sources.

NWT successfully secured the majority of funding for the new centre from Objective 2 the European Regional Development Fund; the East of England Development Agency (EEDA); and the department of Trade and Industry’s Clear Skies Initiative. The rest of the money was raised by two appeals to Trust members, raising a staggering £143,000 for which NWT are extremely grateful. Other major funders have included Natural England, HSBC, The Norfolk Coast Sustainable Development Fund, RWE npower, Norfolk Environmental Waste Services, Ernest Cook Trust and Rees Jeffreys Road Fund, with additional in kind support from Cemex.

These maps are intended as a guideline only; you must check the exact location of the reserve yourself. Wildlife Extra assumes no responsibility for the accuracy or usefulness of the information on this website.


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