Parkdean Resorts raised money to restore more than five rugby pitches-worth of Scotland’s rainforest between May and October this year, as part of a partnership with the RSPB to help conserve vital natural habitat.
Parkdean sponsors the restoration of 20 square metres of Scotland’s rainforest for each holiday home sold, donating the sponsorship on behalf of each new holiday home owner, who also receive a free RSPB family membership. After selling more than 2,700 holiday homes in the first six months of the partnership, the company is funding the restoration of five hectares of Scotland’s rainforest.
The Scotland’s rainforest is a unique habitat of ancient and native woodlands, open glades, boulders, crags, ravines and river gorges dappled by sunlight, dripping with moisture and garlanded with rare lichens, mosses, liverworts, fungi and other plants - some found nowhere else in the world.
This vital habitat is threatened and only 30,000 hectares of rainforest remain in Scotland. It faces threats from over-grazing, meaning that young saplings struggle to grow and cannot continue the natural regeneration process of the rainforest. It is also threatened by invasive non-native species, specifically rhododendron. This plant is a fast grower and crowds out other plants, meaning the diversity of the rainforest is dwindling as one species takes over.
The RSPB is tackling these issues by installing deer fencing to allow saplings the chance to grow stronger, and by removing rhododendron plants to allow the native plant species to thrive. If this work is not done now, there is a real chance there will be no Scottish rainforest left in 100 years. By restoring the rainforest Parkdean Resorts will be helping to ensure it can continue to thrive and be an oasis for wildlife, and that the trees continue to grow and absorb carbon.
Jane Bates, Director of Procurement and Sustainability, Parkdean Resorts, said: “We want to create a positive social and environmental impact, and our mission is to put sustainability at the heart of staycations. Partnering with the UK’s largest conservation charity, and supporting the restoration of vital natural habitat, is a key part of our strategy, and will help ensure that the UK’s countryside is preserved for future generations to enjoy.”
Izzy Baker, warden at RSPB Glenborrodale, said: “By funding the restoration of 5ha of Scotland’s Rainforest, Parkdean and their customers are helping to ensure the future of this globally rare habitat here at RSPB Glenborrodale. With this donation we will reduce the impact of non-native invasive species and encourage regeneration of native trees so that Scotland’s rainforest can continue to provide a home for species such as wood warblers and blackcaps. We are incredibly grateful to Parkdean and their customers for this support.”