Totternhoe nature reserve in Bedfordshire is a site rich in biodiversity with a fascinating history. Soft chalk limestone has been quarried here since medieval times with the stone used in the interior of many churches - including Westminster Abbey. Its function as a quarry ended in the 1970s, since then the site has become a wildlife-rich haven for more than half the UK species of butterfly, including the rare Duke of Burgundy, plentiful amounts of orchids and all kinds of other species.
Restoration work over the last 18 months, thanks to a Biffa Award grant of £18,755.60 has funded the installation of fencing, allowing sheep to be contained in areas where they can successfully graze sloping sections, which in turn allows chalk loving species to thrive. Areas of scrub and wild clematis have been cleared meaning that a variety of orchids can grow in abundance, and the purchase of a much needed water bowser was also made possible.