Saving England's most threatened species from extinction

Programme overview

The Back from the Brink programme (2017-21) was an ambitious nationwide partnership initiative that aimed to save some of our most threatened species from extinction and reverse their fortunes to put them back on the road to recovery, working through a suite of 19 conservation projects across England.

The programme partners came together to pool expertise and develop new ways of working, whilst inspiring people across the country to discover, value and act for threatened animals, plants and fungi.

Programme Aims

  • Conservation

    Transforming the fortunes of wildlife: aim to save 20 species from extinction, put a further 92 ‘primary’ species on the road to recovery, and provide benefits for a further 112 ‘secondary’ species.      

  • Community

    Inspire a nation to discover, value and act for threatened species – aim of 1.3 million people engaged.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

  • Collaboration

    A new way of working: aim for 8 partner bodies and many more organisations to pool expertise and develop new ways of working to break new ground for nature conservation.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

  • Legacy

    A legacy of success: aim for threatened species to be restored to a steady state, with landowners and communities working to actively sustain them.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                

Key achievements

  • Conservation

    Transforming the fortunes of wildlife: 83 priority species have seen improvements in their conservation status and prospects, as a result of our efforts, and our work has benefitted a total of 201 species. 

  • Community

    Inspiring a nation: people had more than 180 million opportunities to engage with Back from the Brink, with 59,000 people being directly engaged – including over 10,000 who have learnt new skills and nearly 4,000 people who have actively volunteered their time.

  • Collaboration

    A new way of working: the 8 BftB partners worked effectively together and with 100+ other organisations across England to significantly boost more integrated efforts for species recovery, underpinned by a new framework for the conservation sector to work in partnership for the future.

  • Legacy

    A legacy of success: the prospects for targeted populations of our threatened species have been improved from the practical actions carried out to support them, with more people knowing about and acting for them, with more effective collaborative working by conservation bodies on species recovery as a result. 

Map

Our projects delivered conservation work for threatened species across the length and breadth of England; from the tip of Cornwall to the Scottish border in Northumberland.