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Exclusive chance to sleep in nature's home at RSPB Burton Mere Wetlands

Last modified: 19 July 2013

Children in a tent

Discover the secret world of the reserve after dark

This August, discover what really goes bump in the night by taking part in the RSPB’s brand new Big Wild Sleepout at RSPB Burton Mere Wetlands nature reserve.

For one weekend only, a ‘sleepover’ will be held at the site offering families a rare chance to camp at the reserve and take part in a variety of exciting activities.  This fantastic summer sleepout experience, which will be held on both Friday 9 August and Saturday 10 August, will include the opportunity to discover the secret world of the reserve after dark and look for owls, bats and badgers.

Dan Trotman, Visitor Development Officer at RSPB Dee Estuary Reserves, said: “The RSPB is encouraging people to spend a night in nature’s home and what better way to experience it than joining our Big Wild Sleepout event at one of the best wetlands in the North West.

“Alongside taking part in all the interesting activities, including moth trapping and den building, families will be able to cook on our barbeque grills and enjoy a good night’s sleep in their own tents under the stars. This is a rare opportunity and there are limited places available for both nights so we encourage families to book as soon as possible. It’s a great way to get outside and join in a community event.”

The Burton Mere Wetlands event is one of a number of Big Wild Sleepouts taking place across the UK from 9-11 August. Around the country, people will not only be sleeping in their tents, but in dens made from fallen branches, ropes and sheets, while ‘Glampers’ will be halfway between camping and comfort as they bring their mattresses outside.

Richard Bashford, the RSPB’s Big Wild Sleepout organiser, said: “There’s plenty of RSPB organised events taking place, but if you can’t join one of these, then you can take part by sleeping out in your garden. Imagine if you settled down and heard an owl calling, a fox barking or peeked out of your tent and saw a bat feeding overhead.”

To make the most of a garden sleepout, there are plenty of fun activity ideas on the RSPB website, from building dens to torch light safaris. People can also ask their friends and family to sponsor a sleepout to help the RSPB to give nature a home.

In a bid to encourage even more people to sleep out, the RSPB has joined forces with Blacks, the outdoor retailer.

Ken Reeve, CEO of Blacks, says: “Blacks is extremely proud to be part of this tremendous initiative. We are wholly supportive of any campaign that encourages more people to engage with nature and we see the Big Wild Sleepout as an ideal platform to encourage families to experience the outdoors together.”

The Big Wild Sleepout is part of the RSPB’s new Giving Nature a Home campaign which is aimed at inspiring everyone to provide a place for wildlife wherever they live and however big their outside space is.

There are two chances to join the event at Burton Mere Wetlands - from 5.30pm on Friday 9 August until 9am on Saturday 10 August and from 5.30pm on Saturday 10 August to 9am on Sunday 11 August. The cost is £15 per adult and £10 per child. Participants are asked to bring their own tents and refreshments for the evening and breakfast. A barbeque grill will be available for use on Friday and Saturday evening and hot and cold drinking water will also be available. Indoor toilet facilities are on site.

To book for the Burton Mere Wetlands Big Wild Sleepout, call the reserve on 0151 353 8478 or email deeestuary@rspb.org.uk. Payment in advance is required.

For more information and ideas on how to make the most of your Big Wild Sleepout, and for details of events near you, visit: www.rspb.org.uk/sleepout

How you can help

Nature in the UK is in trouble and some of our more familiar garden species are amongst those suffering serious declines. We can all help by give nature a home where we live.

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