Wildflower field

Developing a pollinator action plan

The role of councils in helping pollinators

A major threat to wild bees and other pollinators is loss of natural habitats. We can all play a part in creating and protecting green spaces – whether it's the government, business or people like you.

Thanks to Friends of the Earth and other organisations, the government launched the National Pollinator Strategy in 2014 to reverse the decline of pollinating insects. This was a step in the right direction but there is still more to be done.

At local level, councils can also play a critical role in habitat protection, restoration and creation, and you can ask them to do just that.

What you can do

As a resident, you can really influence council priorities - especially when there are benefits for wildlife and people

You can show how concerned you are about the decline of bees and other pollinating insects, and why you believe it's important for councils to adopt a pollinator action plan.

Inspire your council to create habitats that for years to come will support wild bees, butterflies, moths, hover flies, beetles, wasps and other wildlife.

Either take action by signing up to ask your council to implement a pollinator action plan, or use our handy guide to directly persuade your council yourself.

What councils can do

A pollinator action plan provides councils with an opportunity to review current management of parks and other green spaces. Often it's a chance to identify new, more attractive and potentially cost-saving opportunities.

If you work for a council, find out what the key features and benefits of a pollinator action plan are, and learn from councils that are leading the way.

Case studies: pollinator-friendly councils

A growing number of councils are developing pollinator action plans.

The South West has shown real enthusiasm. Cornwall, Devon and Dorset have committed to measures such as adapting mowing regimes to encourage wildflowers, and banning the use of bee-harming pesticides on council-owned land.

In Wales, Torfaen has committed to protecting pollinating insects, as have Conwy and Monmouthshire, which have achieved Bee Friendly accreditation.

What else are councils doing?

In 2017 Friends of the Earth and The Women's Institute hosted a Bee Summit. Councils shared some of the practical measures they have adopted and obstacles they have faced.

Here are some videos of the great presentations from the day.

Buglife and Friends of the Earth guidance for councils - Action for Pollinators; A Blueprint for Local Authority Best Practice

Dorset council spoke on local authority pollinator efforts - Improving Local Networks for Pollinators

Managing parks in Burnley - Pollinators & Purse-strings; Council Action on a Budget


Bee-friendly Wales

Across Wales schools, councils and businesses are becoming more and more bee and pollinator friendly.

Welsh schools are getting bee friendly thanks to an initiative by Friends of the Earth Cymru in association with the Welsh Government. Follow one primary school’s journey to Bee Friendly status.