Barry Craske

We spoke to Melissa Spiers from Coombe Bissett Down to speak about her role at Wiltshire Wildlife Trust and the impact of the Heritage Lottery Fund. 

What is your role at Wiltshire Wildlife Trust?

I’m the Coombe Bissett Down (CBD) Project Officer for community engagement. My job is to engage people with this rare habitat and the reversion process (returning arable land to chalk grassland). This can be through school sessions, volunteering events, public events, groups, walks, talks and much more.

What’s your favourite part about the role?

The best bit about my role is getting people of all ages outside and enjoying nature. It’s incredibly rewarding to have enthusiasm for wildlife spread to others, whether it’s through a talk or a minibeast hunt. I have been in post under two months but I think I’m really going to enjoy the summer when CBD is buzzing with the activity of both wildlife and people across the reserve.

Ryan Tabor

What will the Heritage Lottery Fund  mean to you?

It’s a great resource for us to carry out ambitious work creating incredibly valuable habitat and connecting wildlife sites across Wiltshire. Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) helps carry out essential conservation for the benefit of both wildlife and  people which we just wouldn’t be able to do otherwise. I wouldn’t be here to support people on the nature reserve without HLF funding.  

Barry Craske

What does the HLF fund enable you to do that you couldn’t do before?

The fund means a chance to support lots of local groups coming out to the reserve and anyone that wants to get more involved with the Coombe Bissett Down nature reserve. HLF have allowed people who couldn’t get to the site (financially or physical) or connect with it to now access it through the help of Wiltshire Wildlife Trust staff and volunteers. Everyone should have a chance to access natural spaces as they are a huge benefit to health and wellbeing. It also enables volunteers to upskill through training courses (surveying/leading groups) and they can then go on to monitor or promote wildlife on the reserve long after the project has ended.

What does it mean for visitors coming to Wiltshire Wildlife Trust nature reserves?

Coming to our CBD nature reserve means lots more events and opportunities for everyone to connect with nature and explore the site with a little added help.

Do you have any hidden gems in Wiltshire?

I’ve recently moved to the area for the role so I’m still exploring! Of course I’ve got to say Coombe Bissett Down, it’s a huge site that has lots of hidden pockets for flowers, insects, deer and other wildlife to thrive, great for an explore. Living in Salisbury, I enjoy walking through the water meadows, the other day I saw a water vole which was a real treat as they’re are usually incredibly secretive creatures.

If you would like to know more about our Coombe Bissett Down project and to get involved with events, volunteering opportunities and more please contact Melissa by email.




  1. Denis
    The activities of the Heritage Lottery Fund and the involvement of people in environmental protection are, in my opinion, quite progressive. And the fact that worldwide conservation takes place through the involvement of volunteers and various types of school activities causes respect and admiration. Nature should be explored and protected. I had no idea about this until I had to prepare my individual research on this topic. I was ignorant of this problem, so I used this site and did the right thing. I know now more about ecology and measures that help keep our environment clean. In addition, thanks to the environmental assignment help, I realized the connection between the environment and our health.
  2. Ann
    NAture help me a lot!
  3. Lida
    I've encountered many people lately who are struggling with feeling unwell. I was in a similar situation for a while and didn't know what to do. Then a friend recommended that I learn about what is hash from this site as a potential solution. After trying this remedy, my overall well-being improved, and I started feeling better. I suggest checking out this resource for a more detailed explanation and possible relief.
  4. reasdasd
    Enter the world of flavor with PVRE: Rosin Peanut Budder Chocolates (80mg THC). These delicious chocolates are a treat for your taste bud and your inner foodie. Each chocolate is soaked in smooth peanut butter and covered in rich chocolate. PVRE: Rosin Peanut Budder Chocolates contain 80 mg of THC, creating a balance between delicious taste and beneficial effects.
  5. Lidsa3
    Step into the world of Canadian-themed online casino games at and discover a treasure trove of cultural richness. With slots featuring iconic Canadian symbols like maple leaves and hockey sticks, these games offer a unique gaming experience. Embrace the excitement and play with a touch of Canadian charm!

Leave a Reply