Lundy Island 50-year lease extension signed

Lundy Island
Image caption Lundy Island is managed by the Landmark Trust

A lease extension has been signed for an island off the Devon coast, protecting it for the next 50 years.

Lundy Island was given to the National Trust in 1969 and it has now extended its lease to the Landmark Trust, which manages the day-to-day running.

At the time, wildlife numbers were dwindling and there were concerns the island may be developed.

It is now home to more than 21,000 seabirds and 200 breeding grey seals after concentrated conservation work.

Image copyright NT Images/ Nick Upton
Image caption There are more than 200 breeding grey seals off Lundy Island

The National Trust said: "The 50-year lease solidifies each organisation's commitment to continuing to care for Lundy, ensuring its special character and the experience which so many cherish can continue for the next half century."

Earlier this year, the island launched a campaign to find more staff to work on the Lundy.

The island remains home to the Lundy cabbage - the only place this type of wild brassica can be found anywhere in the world.

Image caption Jack Haywood bought the island for £150,000 in 1969

More than 18,000 people visit the island each year, sailing on its passenger and supply ship, MS Oldenburg, or flying out and back by helicopter during the winter months.

There are 27 permanent residents who are employed by the Landmark Trust.

In 1969, the island was bought by philanthropic businessman Jack Haywood for £150,000.

He then gave it to the National Trust, saying: "I hope it will be preserved for all time for the British nation exactly as it is."

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