Glantawe Riverside Park is located on a former tin plate works. Despite being a brown field site there is a rich abundance of wildlife found here. This project aims to record what wildlife is found here, involving local volunteers to give them skills to apply on site as well as on other local projects. The results of the surveys will be used to develop a pragmatic management plan for the site and potentially as a baseline for enabling the Park to receive SINC status from NPT Council.
There have been a number of approaches to attracting volunteers to the surveys. These include targetting groups, invitating known volunteers and promoting and holding a family event. So far eight surveys have been undertaken under the guidance of Martin Humphreys and numbers attending have varied considerably depending on the weather! Volunteers who have benefitted from the training included those from local community groups such as Bryncoch Action Group, Brecknock Wildlife Trust, Kites and Dippers (RSPB group) and Swansea Canal Society.
The equipment purchased has also been used outside the surveying. Forest School Swansea and Neath Port Talbot have borrowed bug pots and trays, while RSPB borrowed binoculars for one of their walks on site. The equipment has also been used by local schools for bug hunts and by the Riverside Centre for family events.
The surveys got coverage in the Evening Post and played a role in Arena Pontardawe receiving Neath Port Talbot Green Project of the Year 2011. The project has also brought the site to the attention of the NPT Biodiversity Forum who are planning to have a Biodiversity blitz on June 15th where specialists come down to look at what wildlife we have.
The project will end at the end of the summer but as a result of the Environment Wales grant award, volunteer work will continue, now that transects have been set up for birds, butterflies and flora. The equipment purchased will be made available and promoted to local community groups and schools as well as being used on future projects.
For more information about the project please visit: http://www.arenapontardawe.com/riverside/index.html