Hickling Living Landscape

Hickling LLxHickling Living Landscape

restoring a range of wetland habitats

Norfolk Wildlife Trust

The scheme area is dominated by Hickling Broad, which encompasses a range of wetland habitats including open water, reed bed and grazing marsh. It also includes the coastal plain with heathland and sand dunes. Bittern, marsh harrier, common crane and pink-footed goose are a few of the species that currently thrive in the area.

However, most of the area has historically been drained for arable cultivation. Nutrient inputs and increased salinity are having a significant impact on water quality and consequently on rare aquatic plants such as the stonewort. There is also considerable uncertainty over the long-term sustainability of the current sea defences.

What’s happening?

A range of innovative delivery mechanisms are being implemented to bring Hickling Broad and other habitats into favourable condition:

  • 120 hectares proposed for flooding subject to technical feasibility and funding.
  • A 200-hectare wetland restoration scheme being delivered by NWT will create reedbed, wet woodland and open water.

Start date: 2008

Scheme area: 5,000 hectares


Trust reserves within the scheme

Priory Meadows, Hickling Broad, Martham Broad

This scheme is helping species including...

Bittern, marsh harrier, common crane, aquatic plants including rare stoneworts, winter wildfowl including huge numbers of pink footed goose and Bewick's swan

Current threats to the landscape

Historical land drainage leading to ochre, salinity and nutrient inputs; uncertainty about sustainability of current sea defences.

Upper Thurne SSSI suffering from poor water quality and in need of catchment management. Coastal defences unsustainable in long term

This scheme is also...

Helping wildlife adapt to climate change, improving water quality, reducing flood risk, improving access for people, providing volunteering opportunities and environmental education


Natural England, Environment Agency, Broads Authority, Broadland Flood Alleviation Project

To find out more

Email: info@norfolkwildlifetrust.org.uk | Tel: 01603 625540 | Hickling Living Landscape

Living Landscapes

Find out more about our Living Landscape conservation work - targeting areas for landscape-scale nature conservation  and transforming places for people and wildlife.

Living Landscape schemes

Search our directory of more than 100 Living Landscape schemes

Search our directory of more than 100 Living Landscape schemes around the UK, the Isle of Man and Alderney.