A PROJECT to transform a former Carlisle golf course for nature are among a host of new schemes being launched to boost wildlife.

The Wildlife Trusts coalition has unveiled 10 new projects across England and Wales, which also include restoring arable fields to heathland, improving wildflower meadows and quadrupling the size of a nature reserve to help a rare butterfly.

The trusts have raised almost £8m since launching a campaign to drive the recovery of nature across 30 per cent of land by 2030 six months ago, including £900,000 from the public.

The effort to boost the recovery of nature, to reverse declines over recent decades, is backed by broadcaster and naturalist Sir David Attenborough, who said that “if given a chance - nature is capable of extraordinary recovery”.

“The Wildlife Trusts’ campaign to secure 30 per cent of our land and sea for nature’s recovery by 2030 offers us the vision and level of ambition that is urgently needed to reverse the loss of nature, and so improve all our lives.”

Sir David warned: “We are facing a global extinction crisis which has implications for every one of us.

“It’s tempting to assume that the loss of wildlife and wild places is a problem that’s happening on the other side of the world.

“The truth is that the UK is one of the most nature-depleted countries on the planet and the situation is getting worse.”

Wildlife Trusts chief executive Craig Bennett said: “Just protecting the nature we have left is not enough; we need to put nature into recovery, and to do so at scale and with urgency.

“We need to transform nature-poor areas into new nature-rich places - and change the way we think about land, looking for opportunities to help nature outside traditional nature reserves.”

One of the new projects by the coalition of wildlife groups, some of whom are still fundraising to help them deliver the schemes, is the transformation of a 42-acre ex-golf course in Carlisle into an urban bee and butterfly oasis.

This will be done by Cumbria Wildlife Trust by removing golf infrastructure, creating wildflower-rich meadows and wetland scrapes and planting trees and shrubs.

Of the 10 projects, there is a second scheme in Cumbria by the county's wildlife trust, which will see the improvement of 30 acres of hay meadows at Bowber Head Farm, near Ravenstonedale.

These will be restored to top condition to encourage more northern specialities such as wood crane’s-bill, melancholy thistle, and saw-wort.