Young fans of nature are being offered a free backpack kit in Sidmouth to help them explore the ‘glorious’ Sid Valley.
Up for grabs at Sidmouth Library, in Blackmore Drive, are nature explorer backpacks – a new project to encourage children and families to get out and about in the area.
Each backpack contains magnifiers, specimen pots and information about the flora and fauna found in the East Devon countryside.
The backpacks have been funded thanks to The Keith Owen Fund, Stuart Hughes, Devon County Councillor for Sidmouth, and the Sidmouth Library Friends Group.
The hope is the nature kits will encourage youngsters to gain a love of the countryside and, as a result, protect the environment.
The nature kits were designed by library staff, mindful of the East Devon countryside.
Sidmouth Tourist Information Centre will promote the nature explorer idea to visitors.
And the backpacks will be offered to schools in September, for pupil projects.
Carol Pentecost, Sidmouth Library supervisor, said: “We live in a wonderful area of natural beauty and we want to help both resident families and visitors discover more about it.
“The backpacks were developed by our staff as a way of encouraging interest in our local environment, which in turn creates a desire to protect it.
“Our local Tourist Information Centre is kindly promoting the backpacks to families on holiday who we hope will also visit the library and enjoy our many other services during their visit.
“In September we plan to promote them through our local schools for class projects.”
Councillor Stuart Hughes, Devon County Councillor for Sidmouth, said: “I’m delighted that the contribution from my locality budget will help encourage more children to explore the stunning countryside around us here in East Devon.
“A child who spends time outdoors will be happier, stronger, and more confident. It encourages good physical and mental health and increases their knowledge of the physical world.”