The results are in and the public has decided – no, it’s not the X Factor this time – the new name for the Llynfi Valley Community Woodland is Coetir Ysbryd y Llynfi.
Natural Resources Wales is creating the new woodland on the site of the former Coegnant Colliery and Maesteg Washery in the Upper Llynfi Valley, in a project funded by the Welsh Government Nature Fund.
Work to convert the 30 hectare site began last month, when diggers moved in to prepare the ground ready for the planting of 60,000 trees over the winter.
Now the preparatory work is completed, planting has got underway and as part of National Tree Week, children from seven local schools will be planting a mixture of broadleaves and ornamental trees at the site.
The official naming ceremony will take place at 10am, on Wednesday, December 2, at the site.
The new name Coetir Ysbryd y Llynfi, which means The Spirit of Llynfi Woodland in English, was suggested by Heidi Bennett, Chief Executive of Bridgend Association of Voluntary Organisations, based in Maesteg, and was selected by local schoolchildren and councillors and Communities First representatives.
Emyr Roberts, Chief Executive of Natural Resources Wales, said:
“The Coetir Ysbryd y Llynfi project gives us the opportunity to show how we can take forward the sustainable management of natural resources and deliver benefits for local communities.
“Having green spaces on our doorstep is not just good for wildlife, it also helps people feel better about their community and provides an area to unwind and exercise.
“NRW’s purpose is to ensure that our environment and natural resources are maintained, enhanced and used.”
Ford Motors, which has 300 employees living in and around the Llynfi Valley, has made a significant financial contribution to the project for the next 10 years and has also committed volunteering days to support the development of the project.
The partnership with Ford will support tree planting and developing green exercise facilities providing a space for health and well-being activities for the community.
Mark Thomas, Bridgend Plant Sustainability Manager, said:
“Ford is very excited to be Natural Resources Wales’ partner in the development of a woodland in the Llynfi Valley.
“This encapsulates our sustainability strategy to interconnect our products, plants, people and the communities in which we operate by giving the provision of attractive green space for a community that hosts so many of Ford’s employees.
“We look forward to many hours of staff volunteering time spent in the woodland.”
Coetir Ysbryd y Llynfi will not only improve the environment of the Llynfi Valley by increasing biodiversity, reducing water run-off and absorbing pollution but will also encourage people to spend more time outside and increase their activity levels.