Cornish community rally to save baby bats born in St Sampson’s Church, South Hill, Cornwall

Do you love your Cornish wildlife? Have you ever fancied sponsoring an at-risk animal? Now is your perfect opportunity.

Bats need help to keep the roof over their heads.

In May 2021 two families of bats were found in the roof at St Sampson’s Church, South Hill. The two maternal roosts are, common Pipistrelles and the more infrequent Natterers bats. The UK population of Natterer’s bats is of international importance and they are listed as declining within the red data book for Cornwall.

Unfortunately, the bats are in danger as urgent roof works on the church are needed. Local community group CRUX has been fundraising over the past three years for the roof, but with the discovery of the baby bats the mission has become ever more critical. Whilst bat habitats are protected by law, it falls upon volunteers and donations to fund their conservation and enable them to thrive.

Dr Honor Gay, Bats in Churches Project agrees: ‘churches are crucial sanctuaries for Natterer’s bat’s and I applaud the church community at St Sampson’s for living alongside their important maternity roost’.
To help care for the new tenants of St Sampson’s Church, you can sponsor a St Sampson’s bat, or part of a bat. The extra cost, on top of vital roof repairs to keep the bats safe is £6,000. The survey identified 30 bats flying in and out to their roosts so each bat needs £200 rent – although babies live free! You can sponsor a whole bat or a contribution towards it (whole bat £200, wing £50, leg £20 echolocation hearing £10). All of your donation will go towards the expense of housing and keeping the bats safe.
The Bishop of Truro, Rt Revd Philip Mounstephen, has already put his name down to sponsor a bat: ‘Learning to live in harmony with nature, rather than trying to curb and control it, is one of the greatest challenges of our time. That’s why I’m very supportive of the ‘South Hill ‘Sponsor a bat appeal’ – and why I’m delighted to be sponsoring a bat myself. Please do consider how you could help support these amazing creatures – and the lovely community of St Sampson’s, South Hill.’
In return for sponsoring a whole bat, you can name your own bat. For a contribution towards a bat, we will assign a bat name to you. You will receive a certificate with your bats name on it and full details of the project and a list of sponsors will be displayed in St Sampson’s church. You will also be able to attend a talk on bats at the church for free.

You can donate on our Just Giving page South Hill Bat Project -helping bats and humans share their space. – JustGiving then send an e mail to to receive your certificate or, by sending a cheque made out to ‘The Rector and Church Wardens of South Hill – to Judith Ayers, Southview Barn, 83 Launceston Road, Callington, Cornwall PL17 8DS.