Nature North: Building new partnerships for nature

The last week of February was a busy time for Nature North, as we welcomed delegates to Nature North 24 and then attended the Convention of the North in Leeds. Both events highlighted the value of working in partnership with fellow northerners who share our ambition for nature recovery at scale, recognising the many benefits for people and places across Northern England.  

Nature North 2024 had delegates from the conservation sector, farming, business, finance, arts, heritage, NHS, infrastructure and utilities, local government and Government agencies. We were hugely impressed by the quantity of expertise in the room, and it was exciting to see cross-sector connections being made, both during sessions and over refreshments.  

As well as informative speeches by northern leaders and presentations from some inspiring nature recovery projects, the day’s discussion workshops were led by our seven Investable Propositions, tackling the nitty gritty of financing and delivering nature recovery at scale. The findings of these conversations will be published in April.  

As a partnership, Nature North is keen to bring forward the next generation of nature leaders, so we were delighted to launch the Nature Recovery Leaders Programme with Common Purpose UK.

We also announced a major piece of work for 2024/25 – a Strategic Investment Plan for Nature Recovery in the North of England. The Plan aims to demonstrate how working together for nature investment will help the North meet biodiversity and climate targets, and increase the confidence and visibility of the North as a destination for nature finance.  We know this needs to be a strategy for and by the North, so we’ll be working with stakeholders from all sectors to create the plan during 2024.

Look out for future announcements about ways to get involved. 

 

While February was certainly wet, it brightened for us when we saw the high profile given to nature at this year’s Convention of the North, the annual flagship gathering of the North’s political, business and civic society leaders. With nearly 90% of the North soon to be covered by a devolution deal, there is a real opportunity for the North to lead the way on nature, bringing benefits in terms of investment, jobs, health and wellbeing. 

Alongside NP11, and through the Northern Place and Culture Partnership, we’ve been working to raise the importance of nature in northern policy. This year we contributed to the policy papers underpinning the Manifesto of the North , which were debated and refined at the Convention. The Manifesto is a message to all political parties about what the public, private and third sectors think the North needs to prosper, and we were really pleased that nature was included in the headlines for both Net Zero and People & Place. Once again, the North is leading the way!