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Work begins to turn Preston park into rare plant haven

Photo Ian Robinson
Steve Cowell and Jamie Ellithorn from the Lancashire Manchester and North Merseyside Wildlife Trust in the area of Haslam Park which will be landscaped to create a wetland habitat

Photo Ian Robinson Steve Cowell and Jamie Ellithorn from the Lancashire Manchester and North Merseyside Wildlife Trust in the area of Haslam Park which will be landscaped to create a wetland habitat

WORK to turn part of a Preston park into a wetland habitat is blooming.

An area of Haslam Park, off Bristow Avenue, is being landscaped as part of a £61,000 project to conserve threatened plants.

Seeds will be collected, with emphasis on rare, declining and threatened plants with restricted distribution that are associated with ponds and wetlands.

The seeds will be stored and or propagated into trays and grown by Lancashire Wildlife Trust (LWT) specialists and local volunteers.

When sufficiently developed, the plants will be introduced into the wetland habitats created at the park.

Chris Taylor of LWT will be overseeing the work.

He said: “This is a great opportunity to improve Haslam Park, create new habitat and give a helping hand to some plant species in sharp decline.”

Chris said targeted habitat management on the site will ensure the plants become established and are conserved long-term.

Three interpretation boards, describing the work’s aims and objectives, will also be installed in the area.

Work is expected to be complete by mid summer.

The project has been developed by LWT and the Friends of Haslam Park, with support from Preston City Council and city councillors.

The Veolia Environmental Trust has awarded a grant of £49,082 through the Landfill Communities Fund, with the rest of the money from Preston Council.

Paul Taylor, the executive director of the Veolia Environmental Trust, said: “This important scheme will benefit the park’s wildlife and its many visitors and I look forward to hearing about its development over the coming months.”

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