A PROJECT to protect Portland’s wildlife has been given a funding boost.

Albion Stone has donated £18,000 to the Dorset Wildlife Trust Portland Living Landscape Project.

The project, which is about to enter its final year of funding, involves the management of wildlife habitats on Portland, including restoring up to 200 hectares of internationally important limestone grassland, for the benefit of threatened wildlife.

The island ‘invader’ being removed as part of the project is cotoneaster, an invasive species which smothers plants, threatening the survival of endangered butterflies and moths, including a unique chalk grassland form of the silver studded blue butterfly.

Portland Living Landscapes officer Sam Hamer said: “We are very grateful for the ongoing local support from Albion Stone. Thanks to this donation, we can now provide match funding for a Landfill Communities Fund grant from Viridor Credits, which will release £180,000 towards continuing to improve the quality of the natural environment of Portland.”

Operations director of Albion Stone Tony Porter said: “We are particularly pleased that the project will not only benefit wildlife, but the local community too. It’s great to walk around the island and really see the difference the work has already made.”

The project is a partnership initiative funded by a commemorative grant from Viridor Credits Environmental Company and supported by the Court Leet of the Royal Manor of Portland, Portland Bird Observatory, Plantlife, Butterfly Conservation and Natural England.

Dorset Wildlife Trust is looking for volunteers to join work parties in Portland’s quarries. Contact Sam Hamer on 07824 874272 or shamer@dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk