Faughan Valley in Derry/Londonderry is home to some of the last remaining pockets of ancient woodland in Northern Ireland. Like elsewhere, the ancient woods are mostly small, isolated and under threat from invasive species, climate change and tree disease.
The Woodland Trust received a £484,800 second round grant in December 2019, bringing total project funding to £535,500. They are now working to give the woodlands a much-needed boost.
Dave Scott, Estates and Project Manager, Woodland Trust Northern Ireland, said: “Thanks to this investment, we can really focus our efforts in the Faughan Valley to combat climate change, reconnect people with their landscapes, and use trees and woods to build a resilient landscape and create havens for wildlife.”
New facilities will provide a warm welcome to visitors. A series of activities, including tree planting with local schools, will encourage a wide range of people to discover the woodland’s natural heritage. Volunteering and training opportunities include wildlife conservation, biodiversity surveying and leading tours.
Despite the challenges of the pandemic, the team at Woodland Trust have made good progress with the project, planting over 20,000 trees in 2020. The project ends in June 2023.