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24 September 2014
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T: Ted Ellis

Ted Ellis.
Ted Ellis - his great passion was Wheatfen Broad at Surlingham

A look at the life of the Norfolk naturalist

Recently chosen by viewers as all-time best regional TV personality at the Royal Television Society Awards, Ted Ellis became known as "the people's naturalist".

Ted Ellis was fascinated from early childhood by what he described as the "rich adventures" of discovering the natural world.

From 1928 to 1956, he was Keeper of Natural History at the Castle Museum in Norwich.

Ted wrote a daily column for the Eastern Daily Press, and regularly contributed to the Guardian. He was the author of the standard work on the natural history of Broadland, "The Broads".

From the 1960s he found a new audience, becoming a popular radio and television broadcaster. He was awarded an honorary doctorate in Science by the University of East Anglia in 1970, and his scientific work includes the discovery of many new British micro-fungi - which became his particular interest.

Wheatfen Broad

But the great passion of his life was Wheatfen Broad at Surlingham, where he lived in a remote cottage for 40 years. It contains 100 acres of reed beds, tidal channels with a unique diversity of flora and fauna, four miles of pathways and the small broads of Wheatfen and Deepwaters. It is a place of peace.

Long before environmental issues were popular, Ted vividly described the world of Norfolk's fens and waterways, explaining the complex ways in which one life form depends on another, and emphasising the need to protect the area's richness.

Since his death in 1986, Wheatfen Broad has been turned into a permanent nature reserve, through the Ted Ellis Trust. The fen is closed at the moment as a precaution against foot-and-mouth disease.

His widow, Phyllis, continues his work of preserving this special landscape for future generations.

See also:

B: Bring me sunshine
C: Conservation

Internet links:
Wheatfen
 

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Index

Albert Einstein
Bring me sunshine
Conservation
DNA
Eco-friendly
Food for thought
Global warming
Hovercraft
Inspire
Jurassic
Kids' experiments
Links
Mammoth discovery
Natterers bat
Olympic gold
Physician
Quiz competition
Robot wars
Space race
Ted Ellis
Underground
Venus
Weird weather
X-cavation
You only live twice
Zoo


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