National Trust launches major fundraising campaign to secure White Cliffs of Dover

By Culture24 Reporter | 27 June 2012
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an aerial photograph of white cliffs with a lighthouse on the cliff top
© National Trust Images / John Miller
They have become an iconic symbol of England and are fixed in the consciousness of many thanks to a famous wartime song. Now the organisaton which oversees 720 miles of British coastline is launching a major fundraising campaign to preserve them.

The National Trust has today launched a £1.2 million appeal to secure the long-term future of the world famous White Cliffs of Dover in Kent. The Trust say they want to improve public access to an iconic one-mile stretch of the famous coastline and protect it for future generations against what it describes as "inappropriate development".

The aim is to take the white cliff area around the port of Dover and bring it under the management of the National Trust for the benefit of wildlife and public alike. The Trust say the remaining mile, between the Trust’s White Cliffs visitor centre and the Foredown Lighthouse, is the “missing link” which would unite seven miles of iconic and important coastline.

Describing the cliffs as “one the great symbols of our nation”, National Trust Director General Fiona Reynolds said: “We now have a once in a lifetime opportunity to secure their future for everyone to enjoy.  

“If we don’t raise the money then the future of the White Cliffs is uncertain and this stretch of coastline might one day be disrupted by inappropriate management or development.”

As well as their historical significance in British history, the 110-metre tall cliffs are home to a rich array of wildlife including the Adonis blue butterfly, rare coastal plants such as oxtongue broomrape and sea carrot, and birds including skylark, the only colony of Kittiwakes in Kent and peregrine falcons.

The £1.2 million in funding needed to help acquire the stretch of Kent coast and help with the ongoing conservation and management of the whole White Cliffs area needs to be raised by the end of the year.

  • Visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/whitecliffsappeal to donate and have your name engraved on a virtual white cliff, or text DOVR02 plus your donation amount to 70070 (for example, DOVR02 £5). The amount that you wish to donate must be included in the text.

  • Call 0844 800 1895 to donate by telephone, or use the Twitter hashtag #whitecliffs to stay up-to-date with the campaign.

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