Dedham Vale & Stour Valley Project logoClare lies to the north of the Stour which forms the border between Essex and Suffolk all the way down to the sea.  Clare is located within the Upper Stour Valley and looks to the Dedham Vale & Stour Valley Project for advice & support.  The Suffolk Wildlife Trust is another welcome source of advice on environmental issues.

We have a number of Suffolk Wildlife sites within the parish:

Clare Castle Country Park
Clare Common (Upper & Lower)
a Roadside Nature Reserve (a marked protected strip of grass at the top of Maple Hill where it joins Chilton Street, on the SE corner)

These environments are non-statutory but have ‘regional importance’; ‘

Barn owls Photo: Keith Mison

Barn owls
Photo: Keith Mison

designated because they support characteristic or threatened species and or habitats included in Local or National Biodioversity Action Plans’.  See the map on Suffolk Biodiversity Information Service.

Suffolk Wildlife Trust logoSuffolk Wildlife Trust runs a barn owl box programme with volunteers in our neighbourhood, monitoring the birds throughout the year, ringing the owlets.  Warning: however tempting it may be to peep into a box, only a licensed handler can do so.

Environment Agency

The Environment Agency has oversight of the Stour and its tributaries.  This includes the New Cut (the broad watermill course that passes through the country park) and Chilton Street.  It produces a national floodmap which indicates the risk of flooding.  The map for Clare shows in dark blue where there is 1 in a 100 chance of flooding each year – in this zone, new development is restricted.

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