Changes to free Skomer landing benefit for Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales members

Skomer Island at Sunset

Skomer Island at Sunset

Puffin by Lynne Newton

Puffin by Lynne Newton

The Wildlife Trust is dependent on the support of our members, your generous membership subscriptions, donations to appeals and legacies enable the delivery of conservation throughout our area.

We are so grateful for your generosity and being able to offer  free landing on Skomer island is one small way that we can convey our thanks to you. We are determined to protect your benefit for as long as we can, however, over recent years we have noticed an increase in abuse of this benefit and we have become aware of the direct effect this has on the available funds for the charity and conservation. A small number of people are using their membership cards for commercial purposes with some making in excess of 20 free crossings. Membership cards are also being lent to friends and family so people can land on the island without paying the landing fee. The impact that these actions have on the charity income is significant and this is jeopardising the free landing benefit.

Skomer island is our largest nature reserve and also the most expensive reserve to manage, the landing fees collected go some way to paying for the upkeep of the island but do not cover the island’s costs  completely.

In order to protect this benefit for the future we will need to make some amendments. We will continue to allow unlimited free landings during the months of April August and September however , we will be restricting the number of free landings during May, June and July to a total of two per membership. For clarity if you have a family membership you would be able to land the family twice (up to two adults and children) if you have a joint membership you would be able to land the two people named on the membership twice. Please also ensure that you have your membership card with you when you arrive to collect your landing tickets or you will be required to pay for your landing.

Where it is clear that a card has been lent to someone who is clearly not named on the card we may retain the card at Lockley Lodge as this practice has also increased and is eroding the charity income. We are sure that you will understand the need for these small changes to the free landing benefit as we do  need to ensure the maximum amount of charity funds are directed towards conservation.

We remain very grateful for your support and do hope that you will continue to enjoy the benefit of free Skomer landings.

If you do have any questions regarding the changes please contact Jon Cooper  by email at j.cooper@welshwildlife.org or by post at WTSWW, The Nature Centre, Fountain Road, Tondu, Bridgend CF32 0EH.