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Trainees tackle invasive species at Trecwn with Stitch in Time project

Two Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority projects have teamed up to tackle an invasive non-native species at Admiralty Park, The Valley at Trecwn which is part of the Haven Waterway Enterprise Zone.

The Authority’s Skills in Action trainees cleared a growth of rhododendron, which is one of three species being targeted in the Gwaun Valley catchment by the Stitch in Time project, which was set up with funding from the Sustainable Development Fund (SDF).

The trainees used newly acquired skills to remove a growth of rhododendron, one of three species being targeted in the Gwaun Valley catchment by the Stitch in Time project.
The trainees used newly acquired skills to remove a growth of rhododendron, one of three species being targeted in the Gwaun Valley catchment by the Stitch in Time project.

Rhododendron ponticum is an easily recognisable invasive non-native species which out-competes native flora for space, light, nutrients and pollinators. It is also a host to tree diseases such as phytophthora species, which can cause deaths in trees such as oak and larch.

The partnership project was made possible due to the ongoing cooperation and assistance from Admiralty Park, The Valley, where easily accessible rhododendron was targeted for removal by the trainees.

Trainees from the Heritage Lottery Funded Skills in Action scheme have been tackling invasive species at Admiralty Park, The Valley at Trecwn which is part of the Haven Enterprise Zone.
Trainees from the Heritage Lottery Funded Skills in Action scheme have been tackling invasive species at Admiralty Park, The Valley at Trecwn which is part of the Haven Enterprise Zone.

The three-day task saw them putting newly acquired skills to work using equipment such as chainsaws, wood chipper and herbicides, under the supervision of Dyfan Evans and Mike Horton from the Park Authority’s Woodland Team.

Skills in Action Co-ordinator for Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority, Tom Iggleden said: “This is another great example of joint working through the Heritage Lottery Funded Skills in Action trainee scheme, assisting the Stitch in Time project’s wider conservation outcomes.

“Through this partnership with Admiralty Park, The Valley we have managed to identify a controlled environment that has enabled the trainees to use and develop the new skills and techniques they have learned.”

Stitch in Time Project Co-ordinator Matthew Tebbutt added: “Areas that have been dominated by rhododendron ponticum produce a build-up of leaf litter that prevents the growth of other plants and fungi.

“The area the trainees tackled will recover as more space is now available for native flora and fungi to thrive. I look forward to being part of a similar partnership project in the future.”

For more information on both the Stitch in Time and Skills in Action projects visit www.pembrokeshirecoast.wales.

Published 05 April 2017


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