AHNE Bryniau Clwyd / Clwydian Range AONB

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Parks and People Initiative

Between 2011 and 2013, the Great Orme Country Park and Local Nature Reserve and Loggerheads Country Park (Denbighshire) received over £207,000 of European money, through the Countryside Council for Wales’ Communities and Nature Project, which supported delivery of a £462,500 initiative.

The two Country Parks, lying in adjacent local authority areas, are both associated with limestone habitats and are visited by hundreds of thousands of people each year. For information on Loggerheads Country Park, please see http://www.denbighshirecountryside.org.uk/loggerheads-country-park


Great Orme Country Park:

Improvements have been made to footpaths on the headland, and interpretation has been provided in Llandudno and near the entrance to the Country Park which provides visitors with information about how to reach the site and what it has to offer.

The finance has also supported the delivery of conservation work on this headland of European significance for its habitats. Projects have included:
• controlling non-native plant species (which threaten the existence of some of the rare native species)
• managing the heathland to increase its diversity and maximise its benefits to other wildlife
• managing the population of feral goats to ensure its sustainability in the long term

However, the focus of the project has been the Country Park Visitor Centre near the summit of the headland. Energy sustainability has been a priority, and this has been achieved through fitting solar panels and an air-source heat pump. Internal insulation has reduced office heating costs, and a low energy lighting system has further reduced energy requirements. In addition the interpretation displays have been added to with the inclusion of informative films and interactive touch screen information. A weather station has been installed on the roof of the building, and visitors are able to view live and historical information about the local weather.

The project has also financed some interpretation of the old “Tom and Jerry” pumping system which used to drain water from the mines when copper was extracted in the 19th Century. Country Park staff have worked closely with a local voluntary group, the Great Orme Exploration Society, to expose and protect some of the original features.

Why not visit the Country Park and its Visitor Centre, to experience and enjoy these improvements for yourself?

Communities & Nature is a strategic project led and managed by Natural Resources Wales and is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government.


Loggerheads Country Park

At Loggerheads the the project has seen the restoration of the old Pentre water mill and refurbishment of a number of buildings associated with it. The Pentre mill at Loggerheads is an old flour mill, established in the 1760s. It continued to operate until the late 1930s by which time it was primarily used as a saw mill. It ceased operating in 1940 and since that time, despite some work in the 1980s the leetes and mill pond had become increasingly derelict to a point where they nolonger held any water.

The project was able to restore the weir on the river Alyn that few the system as well as the leetes and the mill pond. The wheel now turns properly for the first time in around 60 years.

The project also took the opportunity to better utilise the buildings associated with the mill and have converted one of them into a small interpretative centre for the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley AONB. The room contains an interactive audio visual display that provides an insight into the outstanding landscape of the area.

Another room in this complex of old buildings has been converted into a community volunteer room providing an important facility for the many volunteers that support the work at Loggerheads. The facility will help to promote volunteering in the park and become a focal point for community involvement.

The Communities and Nature initiative has transformed this area of the park, bringing the empty historic buildings to life. With the water wheel now turning regularly this area has become a focal point in the park.

For more information about Loggerheads Country Park go to

http://www.clwydianrangeanddeevalleyaonb.org.uk/loggerheads-country-park/

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