Seaton Visitor Centre Trust (SVCT) has gifted the generous sum of £8000 to Seaton Wetlands. The money will pay for more young people to learn about wildlife and the environment, by subsidising school visits and providing educational and monitoring equipment.
From 2001-2015, Seaton Visitor Centre Trust spearheaded a campaign to open a visitor centre in Seaton. The Centre would provide educational facilities following the UNESCO World Heritage Site designation for Seaton’s Jurassic coastline, which is recognised for its outstanding rocks, fossils and landforms. Working with partners from Devon County Council, East Devon District Council, the Heritage Lottery Fund and others, the Trust helped raise £4.2m and Seaton Jurassic was opened by Princess Anne in 2016.
It sadly closed in 2021, but recently Seaton Tramway announced that the Jurassic Discovery Centre will open there in Spring 2024. By the Summer of 2024, the Centre will unveil an immersive dinosaur exhibition, featuring state-of-the-art animatronic exhibits from the Natural History Museum.
Chair of SVCT, Bernard Dunford, said:
I would like to thank all of our supporters and volunteers for the wonderful help we have received at SVCT. The Trustees have agreed that now is the right time for SVCT to close, as the centre has new owners.
Throughout the 20 years of the Trust, we have enjoyed fantastic local support to deliver our goals of educating people about the history and the environmental story of the Axe Valley and the Jurassic Coast.
The Trustees agreed that remaining funds will be gifted to Seaton Wetlands to continue with these aims, educating people of all ages who will be able to enjoy and protect the wonderful natural beauty of the area.
We are all delighted that Seaton Tramway will be able to continue the work we started all those years ago and we wish them every success.
Cllr Geoff Jung, East Devon District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Coast, Country and Environment, said:
On behalf of Seaton Wetlands, I would like to say a very big thank you to the SVCT for the donation. This money will enable children from local schools to visit and learn about the wildlife. We also plan to install more bird boxes and web cams, which are a real hit with visitors.
This kind donation will make it possible for 15 to 20 school classes to visit and experience Seaton Wetlands. New equipment will include an events shelter, pond dipping equipment, sweep nets, interpretation sheets (and even wellie boots for those who may not have them).
The funds will also pay for an aerial camera for site surveys and extra nest box cameras. Watching birds in their nests always proves very popular to Discovery Hut visitors.