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Magnificent Meadows Wales: Gweirgloddiau Gwych Cymru

Bridgend and NPT Meadows Group, Kenfig Nature Reserve (c) Cassie Crocker

Hundreds of people from across Wales have been inspired to take part in an ongoing initiative to connect local communities to the country’s spectacular wildflower meadows while creating and restoring these species-rich grasslands for the future.

The Magnificent Meadows Wales partnership project built up a head of steam during the year, with people from across the country joining a growing network of ‘meadow makers’. They were spurred into action by a variety of initiatives designed to enthuse and educate, many of which were led by Plantlife.

This included online and face-to-face courses run through our Meadows Academy, which gave people the chance to learn the practical skills needed to restore meadows and manage them in the long-term. The sessions proved popular, with more than 350 people taking part in our conservation grazing webinars and 24 learning how to cut their meadow in a traditional way by completing our scything course. We also launched the online ‘Meadows Hub’ which brought a wealth of information and advice on all aspects of meadow making into one, easily accessible place.

Scything workshop (c) Lucia Chmurova

Art played a key role during 2021/22 by helping us to start conversations about meadow conservation:

We ran a meadow-based arts programme
to bring communities together and celebrate meadows through storytelling, willow weaving and printing.
Successful online art workshops
took place, with 127 people attending.
A community sculpture
was created for display in a Pembrokeshire meadow.

Out in the field, we supported the creation of nine new community meadows and offered advice and resources to help individuals and organisations look after them effectively. We also worked with the National Trust to restore nearly 150 hectares of species-rich grassland at 19 sites, as well as putting plans in place for their successful ongoing management.

In addition, three newly-established meadows groups in Pembrokeshire, Anglesey and south-central Wales were given training to help them successfully manage their land as wildflower-rich meadows.

Plantlife also shone the spotlight on the positive benefits which nature can bring to wellbeing by launching our first meadows health route. This connects the local hospital in Bangor to a nearby meadow, and aims to improve the health and wellbeing of patients and staff by encouraging them to spend time more time outside.

Magnificent Meadows Wales is a partnership project which is led by Plantlife with the National Trust and the Centre for Sustainable Healthcare. It is primarily funded by the Welsh Government’s Enabling Natural Resources and Wellbeing Fund, with additional support from D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust and Oakdale Trust.

Image credits: Header image - Cassie Crocker, image 2 - Lucia Chmurova

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