For now at least… with the emphasis placed on the need for outdoor recreation throughout #Lockdown2, there are no plans for Blashford to close tomorrow, but this will of course be reviewed alongside any changes in Government guidance and policy over coming weeks.
The hides, Education Centre and main car park remain closed to the public but we will continue to hire portable toilets for our visitors to use.
There’s great views of Ibsley Water to be had from the viewing platform which is still open and accessible through the closed main car park and pretty much all of Ivy Lake can be viewed via a combination of the screens on the Ivy/Rockford Lakes footpath and the newly opened screened view adjacent to Ivy North Hide. Away from the water there is plenty of other wildlife to find, including woodland birds like firecrest and brambling and, of course, lots of fungi.
For the next few weeks please do consider whether there are places nearer to your home where you can exercise and enhance/maintain your wellbeing in nature, and, if you do visit Blashford please do respect social distancing when you visit, particularly at the screens or on the viewing platform, do follow the signed one way routes around the reserve and do stick to the paths and viewing areas which have been created and maintained for visitors. We will continue to look for other ways by which we can safely reasonably enhance views of the lakes and wildfowl.
Finally we do hope that you continue to enjoy your visit to the Nature Reserve, that you are rewarded with memorable wildlife encounters and that your time here helps you both mentally and physically as the country continues to grapple with Covid-19.
If your time here is important to you please do make a donation either in the cash donation boxes or via the contactless card payment reader outside the Welcome Hut. If you are a member of Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, please continue to be so and if you’re not a member already please seriously consider joining us, which you can do online here: https://www.hiwwt.org.uk/join-today
Your donations and membership are more important than ever, thank you 😊!