Llanelli Rural Council has been awarded a Woodland Improvement Grant for Lower Lliedi Reservoir in Swiss Valley.
A grant award of £52,919.74 has been made to the council to improve the visitor experience by way of a new woodland management plan and by providing new signage, seating/picnic areas, accessibility, footpath repair and improving existing woodland trails.
Habitat boxes will also be installed to help monitor and aid biodiversity in the woodland. Over the next few months visitors should notice the installation of signage, benches and improved footpaths and woodland trails.
There will be opportunities for volunteers to get involved by clearing and improving existing footpaths. There will also be days set aside for volunteer work parties to install habitat nesting boxes throughout the site for bats, dormice and birds. The grant is being funded by Welsh Government as part of its National Forest for Wales initiative.
The main objective of The Woodland Improvement Grant is to provide funding to enhance and expand existing woodlands and create new woodlands in accordance with the UK Forestry Standard, which have the potential to become part of the National Forest in the future. This means woodlands that are well-managed, accessible to people and give local communities the opportunity to get involved.
The work will complement recent changes made to the site to enable a better visitor experience. This has been made possible since the council entered into a community adoption agreement with the land owners, Dwr Cymru Welsh Water at the end of 2020. Since then the council has improved pathways, access from both car parks, the toilet block and installed a disabled access ramp and pontoon on the reservoir to facilitate paddle sports.
The council has also helped to establish new voluntary angling and paddling clubs at the reservoir while also engaging with outdoor education providers to enable more school and college age students to benefit from the environs at the reservoir. Council Chairman, Councillor Tegwen Devichand remarked “we are delighted to receive this grant funding from the Welsh Government to help us with our general plans to safeguard and enhancing this important beauty spot in Swiss Valley.”
“The grant will further support the improvements identified in our site management plan for the reservoir and surrounding environs but importantly, part of the funding will also pay for a woodland management plan to be devised to help us maintain and make the space more habitable for wildlife and maximise local biodiversity.”
“This additional money will help us preserve the reservoir site for years to come and we hope the local community will look to support us by volunteering with some of the work covered by the grant. Anyone wishing to get involved should contact the council on 01554 774103 or email firstname.lastname@example.org”.