A plantation in Ramsey is to be transformed into a nature-rich native woodland which the government says will ‘benefit people and wildlife, with areas for recreation, exploration and play’.
Claughbane plantation, adjacent to Ramsey hairpin, will be ‘given a new lease of life’ by a long-term agreement between the government and Manx Wildlife Trust with the Hairpin Woodland Park to be launched in 2024.
MWT will take over the running of the plantation for 99 years, until 2121 – having already carried out improvements in the area under a short–term licence from the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture.
The woodland was established around 120 years ago with conifers and broadleaf trees.
Claughbane plantation is the first in a flagship Biosphere project run by MWT, which aims to create the Isle of Man’s first forest by linking and expanding existing wooded areas.
Leigh Morris, chief executive officer of the MWT, said: ‘It’s a wonderful site for wildlife and people with many unique features and over time we plan to gradually convert into an accessible, nature-rich native woodland, the equal of any woodland parks in the UK.
MWT will now look to secure increased funding from third parties so their ‘army ‘of volunteers can start planting trees, improving footpaths and creating better access from both the Hairpin and Milntown.
The government added that the project will also reduced management and maintenance costs for taxpayers.
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