Making Space for Nature

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Space for nature in our towns

Cornwall’s Environmental Growth Strategy calls for creating the space and conditions for more abundant, productive and healthier habitats, species and natural systems. Which in turn, improve the lives of people.

For a host of different reasons wildlife is gradually being lost from towns. We need to provide homes for our bugs, birds and other wild creatures, just as we do for people.

Children are spending less time outdoors. So, providing local high quality urban green spaces for play and interaction with nature, is more important than it has ever been.

Creating new wildflower patches will contribute to the national effort to turnaround the loss of British meadows. Providing pollen, nectar and shelter for our butterflies and bees.

New hedges and woodland will provide homes for hedgehogs and may help to reverse the national decline in hedgehog numbers across the UK.

Making a difference

Making Space for Nature will be good for people and wildlife in lots of different ways by:

  • creating attractive spaces in towns
  • planting flowers, trees and shrubs
  • improving spaces for birds, insects and wildlife
  • enhancing space for people to relax and exercise
  • providing volunteering opportunities
  • educating people and encouraging them to join in to help nature

European Regional Development Fund

European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) is investing in urban green spaces delivering the Making Space for Nature project.

We are working with University of Exeter to improve open spaces. An area approximately the size of 28 rugby pitches will be wildlife and people friendly.

Making space for nature in Cornish towns

What we are doing in Cornish towns

We will be enhancing spaces such as:

  • recreation grounds
  • parks
  • woodlands
  • verges
  • closed churchyards

This is to create havens for bees, butterflies, birds and hedgehogs. There will be:

  • wildflower meadows
  • ponds
  • hedges
  • trees
  • pollinator shrubs
  • bulbs to brighten up selected areas

Wildlife is not the only focus of the project. The project will improve access and understanding through signage, seats, paths and ‘natural play’ opportunities.

For details of which towns and spaces we are working in, please see below.

Work started in September 2020. The rolling programme will complete in December 2022.

Towns and spaces

Making space for nature in Falmouth

In conjunction with Cornwall Councillors, Falmouth Town Council and local communities the following areas were chosen to receive enhancements:

  • The Beacon
  • Lambs Lane estate
  • Swanvale open space in Boslowick
  • Tregoniggie Woodland

Beacon Park

New benches, wildlife-friendly plants, bulbs, trees and meadow patches have been introduced to the site.

View the final plan for The Beacon. Please note some changes have been made while works were underway.

There has been interest from local people to volunteer to look after the small orchard and new planting. Please contact the team if you are interested in volunteering spacefornature@cornwall.gov.uk

Lambs Lane estate

The team met with the resident's association LLAMA on 14 January. As a result of the meeting, the group agreed to improve the open areas between the houses.

Bulbs have been planted and small meadow patches prepared and new trees introduced to provide spring blossom.

To see the plans for the improvements, please see the Lamb's Lane landscape plan.

Swanvale open space - Boslowick

This area is part of the Falmouth Green Corridor from Tregoniggie Woodland to Swanpool.

A consultation exercise is underway and closes on 19 March 2021. Results will be shared with the local community in April before a final plan is agreed. Works should take place here in autumn 2021.

Tregoniggie Woodland

Working very closely with the Friends of Tregoniggie Woodland (FoTW), the team has undertaken some tree works. We have cleared an area of non-native trees now forms an open glade. More appropriate species of trees have been planted as replacements. In addition, selected grassland areas have been renovated and re-seeded to improve the floral diversity.

The Tregoniggie Woodland landscape plan shows the approximate areas where the project will be working.

The friends group has commissioned a local sculptor to create sculptures in the newly created glade within the woodland. Some have been completed and when budget allows extra sculptures will be created.

Exciting news for Launceston

The team has worked with Cornwall Councillors and the Town Council to identify spaces that could be improved as part of the project.

Thank you to all the residents who popped into the Launceston market in Launceston Town Square on Saturday 8 August. It was good to hear from local people who all supported the ideas. A few were interested in volunteering and we will work with them and others to create a long-lasting impact for all the residents of Launceston. If you are also interested in volunteering, please get in touch.

Windmill Hill

A consultation event was held on Saturday 29 February where residents were able to view the plans for two areas in the park

Works have been completed here. The bulbs have started to blossom and the new meadow area should come to life in the summer. We would welcome any volunteers who would like to help maintain this beautiful space in central Launceston

Ridgegrove estate

Also on Saturday 29 February 2020, a workshop was held at St Thomas' Church Hall. Residents of Ridgegrove Estate and Lane gave their views on what improvements they'd like to see at the green spaces in this area.

After the event, the team reviewed all the comments before putting together the plan. A summary of the main findings of Ridgegrove Consultation and how we used this to guide the design has been prepared.

Works were completed here in February 2021 based on the landscape plan

Ridgegrove Park

Cornwall Council has acquired land to the south of Ridgegrove Lane to enable a new crossing over the River Kensey. The team is working with colleagues in Transport to create a new public open space for the benefit of people and wildlife.

Works have commenced on the path following the granting of planning permission. Landscaping works will take place from August 2021 and be completed in the autumn. View the Ridgegrove Outline landscape plan.

Newquay urban spaces to benefit from improvements

The Making Space for Nature team has been working with Cornwall Councillors and the Town Council to agree the focus for wildlife improvements in selected spaces across Newquay.

The following areas were agreed for interventions.

Open space between 36 and 44 Towan Blystra Road

A workshop was held by University of Exeter to gather views of local residents on Saturday 14 March 2020.

After the event, the team reviewed all the comments before putting together the plan. A summary of the main findings and how we used this to guide the design has been prepared.

Based on the suggestions, a landscape plan for Towan Blystra was developed which takes account of community use on the main grassed area with wildlife friendly planting around the edges.

Works have now been completed here.

St Columb Minor play area

Working in conjunction with Officers responsible for play, we have introduced new planting to complement the equipment at this site. Works will complete in March 2021.

View the landscape outline plan for St Columb Minor

Verges in Listry, Mayfield and surrounding roads

Exploratory discussions are being held to agree how best to treat the green verges along several roads in central Newquay. There is an issue with drivers parking on these verges preventing plants from growing. The intention here will be to introduce new planting and habitats then protect these from vehicles. Works at this site, if agreed, will take place from autumn 2021.

The Making Space for Nature team has been working with Liskeard Town Council, Liskeard Together and Cornwall Councillors to agree works

The team took part in the Liskeard Unlocked event on Saturday 12 September 2020. Thank you to everyone who came to talk to us and completed a survey to give us feedback on the designs.

St Martin’s Churchyard

Thank you for the responses to our on-line consultation which closed on 26 May 2020.

The main works have now been completed. We want to set up some community events to involve local people in spring 2021 if circumstances allow.

View St Martin's Churchyard landscape plan. Some changes to these plans were made during the on site works.

Castle Park

Plans include the addition of wildlife hedge, picnic tables, fruit trees, pollinator plant beds, wildflower meadow areas and patches and colourful spring bulbs.

The Castle Park landscape plan is being adjusted to take account of comments received. Works are scheduled to complete in April 2021.

Lanchard Woods

New access, tree works and drainage solution were delivered here in autumn 2020. Local people have embraced these changes and have started to organise regular litterpicks. If you would be interested in helping out, please contact the team.

Penryn is an ancient town. There is evidence that between 1685 and 1869, fruit trees formed extensive orchards through the gardens and across the town. Fruit from these orchards was readily sold to the many vessels that visited the port. The Making Space for Nature project will acknowledge this part of the town's history and introduce fruit trees and pollinator habitat to green spaces.

Works are due to be undertaken from September 2021.

In collaboration with Cornwall Councillors, Penryn Town Council and Trees4Penryn we have agreed to invest in the following sites:

Glasney Field (site of the old college)

The initial Glasney Field Landscape concept has been drafted and shared with local people during Februrary 2021. Permission is being sought from English Heritage for the changes and once this has been granted, the works will be undertaken from autumn 2021.

Woodland below Saracen Way

Some initial tree works were undertaken in December 2020. Further improvements have bene shared with the community. Final plans are being developed and will be delivered from autumn 2021.

Trelawney Park

The initial designs are currently in progress. They will be shared with the community during May 2021.

The ‘Making Space for Nature’ programme has completed in St Austell.

The first project transformed the A391 into a stunning town gateway. A ‘river of wildflowers’ perfect for pollinators runs along the road verges.

Planted in March 2020, 4000m2 wildflowers bloomed. A passer-by took time to tell us how much they enjoyed our work;

'The wildflower meadow areas are truly fabulous. The balance of flowers is magnificent. It is a great accomplishment and they are to be complemented on the initiative.'

In September 2020, the project added more native wildflower areas. This forms a 2.5km wildlife corridor between Tregrehan Mills and Treverbyn roundabouts. A footpath / cycleway runs alongside much of the verge giving up close contact with nature.

The meadows include a combination of annual and perennial species. The mix will evolve over the years. The changes will provide colour and nectar and pollen for bees and butterflies. The meadows will also provide cover and food for birds, small mammals and amphibians. Uncut meadow patches will act as refuge areas for creatures to shelter in over winter months.

Local residents and visitors to the town should enjoy the change over the years to come. This is one of many projects in St Austell for ‘Making Space for Nature’ and the Coastal Communities funded ‘St Austell Fresh Green Futures’

This project has brought together many partners with a shared goal to bring more colour, enjoyment and access to nature to St Austell.

The Making Space for Nature team has been working with;

  • University of Exeter
  • Cormac
  • CC Highways
  • SABEF
  • St Austell Town Council
  • Darren Hawkes Landscapes
  • MeiLoci Ltd
  • Pictorial Meadows
  • National Wildflower Centre / Eden Project

Land south of the Meadows

Thank you to all who responded to a separate on-line consultation which closed on 12 June.

A The Meadows consultation summary of the main findings guided the final The Meadows landscape plan.

Works competed here in February 2021.

Cemetery Park

Thank you to all who responded to our on-line consultation which closed on 12 June. A Cemetery Park Consultation Summary of the main findings has guided the final Cemetery Park landscape plan.

Works completed here in March 2021.

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