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It’s a bug’s life: Insect Hotels come to capital’s parks

Posted at 9:15 am, January 19, 2013 in Fun London
Cleary Garden insect hotel

We’ve all heard horror stories about bug-infested hotels, but we nearly fell off our tuffets when we heard about the London hotels that have been specifically designed to attract as many bugs as possible. Back in 2010, the City of London Corporation commissioned a competition to create a habitat to nurture and protect the capital’s six legged residents. The winners of the competition, architecture firm ARUP, responded by designing a ‘bug hotel’. 

St Dunstans in the East insect hotel

Resembling a beehive in its design, it offers snug compartments where jet-setting bees, stag beetles, butterflies and moths can presumably enjoy five-star style pampering. The interiors are pretty cosy too – each compartment is filled with recycled materials and natural waste, to encourage the residents to nest, eat and reproduce, whilst the top of the structure can collect rain water.

Postmans Park insect hotel

Five similar structures have been built around the city, with more planned. Since November they have been given a makeover by the City of London Corporation. They’ve been helped, in part, by the Corporation’s charity, the City Bridge Trust’s ‘Growing Localities’ programme. The charity has given £1 million in horticultural grants to help vulnerable young people get skills and jobs in the horticulture industry – including maintenance work on things like insect hotels. For the City hotels the renovation has involved refilling them with recycled matter and treating and painting them with organic paints to protect them from weathering. Who’d want to check out? Rebecca Taylor

Bunhill Fields insect hotel

For more details see City Bridge Trust.

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