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Herm Island Specsavers Nature Trail now open!

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Herm Island Specsavers Nature Trail now open!

Herm Island has a new nature trail which offers visitors the opportunity to complete a quiz answering questions about the island wildlife.

The trail is sponsored and supported by Specsavers and was officially opened this week by Specsavers co-founder Dame Mary Perkins and Herm Island schoolchildren, with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Herm Common.

Herm Island Marketing & PR Manager, Kate Evans, said, ‘Herm has such an abundance of beautiful wildlife so we wanted to offer something that would help capture that for visitors and provide a fun and educational resource for both adults and children. We are incredibly grateful to Specsavers for sponsoring the trail which has enabled us to create six trail boards, each with 10 images of birds, marine mammals, insects, flowers, and plant life, with stunning photos provided by local wildlife photographer, Barry Wells.’

The six boards are spread around the island and visitors can obtain quiz sheets from the Herm Shop and follow either a shorter route or the full trail to answer the questions. When they bring their completed quiz back to the shop, they are presented with an answer sheet and Nature Trail Certificate. The trail has been available to visitors since last month and is already proving very popular with lots of positive feedback. Many visitors and school groups have already completed it and Herm is planning on introducing different sets of questions over the summer so people can do the trail more than once, learning new facts each time.

Ably assisted by the island’s seven schoolchildren in cutting the ribbon, Dame Mary said,

‘I am delighted that Specsavers has been able to support this fantastic project, as this is something I personally feel very strongly about.  This is an initiative that encourages people, and especially children, to use their eyes and ears to appreciate the beauty and diversity of the natural world and in particular the beautiful island of Herm. 

It is a scientific fact that children are becoming increasingly myopic, or short-sighted, because they spend more time looking at screens and doing close-up activities, and not enough time outdoors playing and exercising.  Outdoor activity is not just good for our mental and physical wellbeing, it is also good for our eye and hearing health as it encourages eye muscles to focus on more distant objects, allows more oxygen into our eyes, and allows our hearing to make the most of all the sounds around us. Hopefully, the Herm Nature Trail will encourage many generations to appreciate the natural beauty of the island and use their senses to the full.’