Popular Exeter beauty spot to be ‘transformed’ with wildflowers and trees thanks to £48,000 boost

More trees and wildflowers will be planted at a popular Exeter beauty spot thanks to a £48,600 boost – with improved public access also on the cards.

The cash will allow Devon Wildlife Trust (DWT) to ‘transform’ 22 acres of Ludwell Valley Park which are currently deemed ‘species-poor’.

It is hoped the project will ‘bring more colour’ to the green space and attract birds like goldfinches and house sparrows, as well as insects including bumblebees and butterflies.

A new pond and apple and cherry trees have also been promised.

Ludwell – a mixture of green pastures, hedges and wooded copses covering more than 50 hectares of rolling countryside -is just a mile from Exeter city centre.

DWT has secured the funding from Viridor Credits Environmental Company through the Landfill Communities Fund.

It says nine hectares of fields will be ‘transformed’ through the sowing of a rich mix of wildflower seeds.

The park’s network of hedges will also get some attention with 1.5 kilometres of them being ‘laid’ – a management technique where they are cut back to stimulate new growth.

DWT’s Chris Moulton said: “The benefits for wildlife should soon become apparent as next year’s newly-laid hedges will be alive with birdsong.

“Insects will take advantage of the new areas of wildflowers, while frogs, toads and newts will begin to colonise the newly-dug pond.”

DWT will fund four new kissing gates and four new field gates to maked access easier for the thousands of visitors to Ludwell each year.

Councillor David Harvey, lead for anvironment and city management on Exeter City Council, said: “At times like these you appreciate your green spaces more than ever. I for one can’t wait to see the result of this funding and how Devon Wildlife Trust will enhance the park further still.”

Alison Salvador, general manager at Viridor Credits, said: “We are delighted and proud to be able to support the work in this important local park which will greatly improve access for everyone wanting to enjoy the valley.”

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