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Meadow boosted by grants totalling more than £80,000
6:10pm Saturday 7th September 2013 in News
A MEADOW north of Holmes Chapel has been boosted once more thanks to two grants worth more than £40,000.
The Dane Meadow, which is the only significant green space in the village, has once again received some good news.
Only last week contractors began work on new paths in the area so that access will be easier for all including anyone with a disability.
This first phase is funded jointly by Natural England who have provided grants totalling £148,000 and the Holmes Chapel Parish Council which has contributed £58,000.
Now a further grant from WREN of £30,000 and £10,000 from the parish council will allow a nature trail to be created through the area along with two ponds, a bird feeding area and a viewing platform.
This will all be supplemented with interpretative displays and links to a web site.
The Dane Valley Programme Board set up by the parish council and the Holmes Chapel Partnership to oversee the improvements to the Dane Valley have been active in obtaining the grants.
John Clowes, the chairman of the group, said the second grant would allow work to attract a wider range of visitor and introduce new comers to the Country Park on Holmes Chapel’s doorstep.
He also praised the support of staff at Cheshire East Council who have provided professional services from a number of departments and will be overseeing the work on site.
“The underlying purpose was to retain the ‘natural environment’ but encourage more people to visit, participate in its development and maintenance and provide an educational resource for our schools and adult population,” he said.
“A significant shortfall which is now being remedied is the inability to attract the less able due to access issues which were identified as key in the development.
“The local public have been encouraged to get involved and a volunteer group ‘The Friends of Dane Meadow’ has been set up to help with practical tasks such as ground clearance and to monitor the wild life on the site.”
Hazel Sutcliffe, who leads the group, said she was delighted with the news.
“This will allow us to introduce a variety of habitats such as ponds and bird feeders and increase the biodiversity of the site,” she added.
“The ‘Friends’ plan is for regular meetings from 10ams on the last Sunday in each month to carry out practical activities and begin work on various plant and animal surveys.”
People who want to be involved and are not yet on the mailing list should contact the group via Danemeadow@hotmail.co.uk.
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