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New pond for Denbighshire wetland

A partnership is progressing with a makeover for a Denbighshire wetland to help protect and support local wildlife.

Denbighshire County Council has worked in partnership with Balfour Beatty to create a new water feature at the Morfa, a 35-acre wetland in Prestatyn.

Balfour Beatty, who are developing the Rhyl East Flood Defence Scheme, provided the work as part of their commitment with Denbighshire County Council in providing local community benefits.

A viewing platform was recently installed as part of the wetland restoration after the Council secured Welsh Government funding to protect its status as a natural wetland resource.

Welsh Government via their ENRaW grant scheme contributed towards the actual purchase of the land and to develop it as an important wetland resource over a three year period.

The land had previously been in private ownership.

Now additional work has been completed which has seen the creation of a new pond by excavating the wetland in a localised area and then transferring the excavated material to form an embankment on top of what once was an old tipping area.

And during October two more ponds are set to be created at the site to expand the support for the wetland’s nature.

Benefits of this work include increased biodiversity, flora and birds and a wetland attraction for bird watchers to visit.

The wetland also sits next to the Prestatyn gutter and forms a natural sink during times of high rainfall, acting as an important flood defence. As the site returns to its natural form, without all the current vegetation, its water storage capacity will increase.

Grazing will be extended to other parts of the site to bring down the vegetation levels as part of the Welsh Government’s Sustainable Solutions project.

Cllr Tony Thomas, the Council’s Lead Member for Housing and Communities, said: “We are grateful to Balfour Beatty for carrying out this work. This will help the site to continue maturing and return to its natural state as a wetland which will further enhance this fantastic resource for Prestatyn and Denbighshire as a whole.

“Work on the Morfa wetland is part of our wider work to protect the environment as part of the Council’s Corporate Plan.”