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New international protection announced for the Northumberland Coast

A section of Northumberland coastline supporting 200,000 seabirds has been designated as a Special Protection Area (SPA) in recognition of its importance for breeding seabirds. The Northumberland Marine SPA is the most important site in the UK for Arctic, common and roseate terns, the second most important site for sandwich tern, and the third most important site for Atlantic puffin.

International designation will help ensure any disturbance to the birds’ essential open water feeding areas is minimised, so the birds have a safe space to feed in.

For more information visit

Big Watch Weekend 05-06 August 2017

The 5th and 6th of August sees the return of Big Watch Weekend to the North East coast. This annual event is organised by the Environmental Records Information Centre North East (ERIC-NE) as part of the Sea Watch Foundation’s National Whale and Dolphin Watch. The weekend is being held in partnership with Northumberland and Berwickshire Marine Nature Partnership, MARINElife, Northumberland Wildlife Trust and Sunderland City Council.

The Northumberland section of the event will be hosted at Cresswell by the Northumberland Wildlife Trust.

As part of the event, free Cetacean ID training sessions will also be available on 20th and 27th July, delivered by Martin Kitching from MARINElife and will be held  at the Great North Museum: Hancock. These sessions will run from 6:30pm until 8pm.

For more information about the weekend and for details about how to book your place on the free Cetacean ID sessions please visit the ERIC North East website.

June the 8th is World Oceans Day 2017

June the 8th is World Oceans day 2017, the international day of celebration for the role that the oceans play in our lives and the actions we can take to protect them.

World Oceans Day 2017

The theme for 2017 is “Our Oceans, Our Future” and the main focus will be on plastic pollution prevention and cleaning the ocean of marine litter. There are some great resources on the World Ocean Day’s website including resources on plastic pollution

VACANCY! Coast Care Project Coordinator with Northumberland Wildlife Trust

Northumberland Wildlife Trust are looking for a confident, innovative and enthusiastic person to join their team to lead delivery and development of the Coast Care project which aims to engage 2000 volunteers in activities to safeguard the outstanding north Northumberland coastal landscape by 2020.The post is funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and will be based, full time, at the project office at Seahouses Development Trust.

Please click here to download an applicant pack

New Marine Nature Partnership for Berwickshire and Northumberland

In November 2015 the Management Group for the Berwickshire and North Northumberland Coast European Marine Site decided to apply its well-established partnership approach to more of the local marine nature conservation designations.

Because we no longer just coordinate the management of European sites, we decided to change our name to the Berwickshire and Northumberland Marine Nature Partnership.

Our new partnership is a collaboration of more than 20 Scottish and English organisations responsible for managing our local inshore waters. The original partnership was established 16 years ago to proactively manage the Berwickshire and North Northumberland Coast Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and the Lindisfarne Special Protection Area (SPA). The new partnership will coordinate management for the entire network of inshore marine nature conservation designations between Fast Castle Head in Scotland, and the River Tyne in England.

Partnership members include statutory regulators such as Natural England, Scottish Natural Heritage, the Environment Agency and Marine Scotland, together with ports and harbours, local authorities, Northumberland Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority, and conservation charities. Working together, the partnership will develop a toolkit to help us manage this suite of important marine areas. The toolkit will provide management organisations with the resources they need to effectively manage these sites, such as accurate mapping, up to date condition assessments and an inventory of local monitoring activity. It is hoped that the toolkit will eventually sit on a publicly available web-hub, so anyone interested in the management of the local marine environment can learn more.  We will be developing the new website in 2016.

Management of the marine environment can be really complex, especially in the intertidal zone where land and marine legislation, policies and organisations overlap. It’s even more complicated when we have sites that cross the Scottish-English border. Working in partnership is really important and we are excited to be developing a coordinated approach for the area.

The iconic coastline of Northumberland is famous for its large sandy bays like those at Bamburgh, Beadnell and Druridge. The bays are punctuated by rocky headlands that tumble into the sea to form offshore reefs that support large kelp forests. Extensive sand and mud flats between Holy Island and the mainland support large seagrass meadows and dense mussel beds, providing a rich food source for over-wintering seabirds. The high coastal cliffs of Berwickshire and the rugged offshore Farne Islands and Coquet Island support thousands of breeding seabirds in the summer months. Sea caves created by the pounding waves can plunge for hundreds of meters into the depths. One of Europe’s most important breeding colonies of grey seal resides on the Farne Islands and at St Abbs, regularly hauling out on Fenham Flats, while the Tweed and Aln estuaries are important havens for fish.

The shallow sea, shores and estuaries of Berwickshire and Northumberland are home to some of the most spectacular marine life in world. With so many people involved in management, the partnership really helps us to work together to protect these special areas.

VACANCY!! Environmental and Scientific Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Officer

Want to make a real difference in the Northumberland marine environment??

Northumberland Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (NIFCA) has a full-time permanent vacancy for an Environmental and Scientific Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Officer.

Salary range £20k to £25K depending on experience

Download the full advert here

See the NIFCA website for more information

Oceans Connected Launch !!

On 28th May we will be launching Oceans Connected, an exciting new project that connects marine citizen science projects around the globe.  Join us at Beadnell and help us to record rocky shore species, while ClimateWatch Marine volunteers simultaneously collect data in our ‘twinned’ site – the Sapphire Coast Marien Discovery Centre in New South Wales, Australia!!

Contact Claire Hedley for more details.

Tel:  01670 622 651


Cross-Border Currents : Spring 2014

Cross-Border Currents is the e-newsletter for the Berwickshire and North Northumberland Coast European Marine Site

Click here to download the Spring 2014 issue

VACANCY!! – Living Seas Officer

Northumberland Wildlife Trust is the North East’s leading environmental charity. We work to protect local wildlife, promote nature conservation and provide a means by which everyone can get involved.

We are looking for a confident, innovative and enthusiastic person to join our Conservation Team to assist in the delivery of NWT’s Living Seas awareness programme.

These events set out to raise awareness of the North Sea marine environment and will, through the development of our new fisheries work, seek to investigate and promote the need for a healthy marine environment in order to support a healthy fishery. Daily operations focus on development and delivery of a core events programme aimed to inspire people to support the Trust’s vision for Living Seas. Activities will include Seashore Safaris, Living Seas Safaris (boat trips), Undersea Explorers, working with local fishing communities to develop our knowledge of the marine environment and working with volunteers in order to undertake survey, primarily shore based focussing on intertidal marine wildlife and litter.

If you have experience of working in Living Seas and have a positive, can-do attitude, and you would like the opportunity to work in a dynamic, friendly and forward-looking organisation then this may be the perfect job for you.

The role is offered on an open-ended contract and is for 35 hours a week. Salary £19,565.

The post will be subject to a Disclosure and Barring Service check.

Closing date for applications is noon on Monday 21st April 2014 and we expect interviews to take place week commencing 28th April 2014.

For an application pack, please visit or contact

Paula Turner, HR and Payroll Officer