We are delighted to announce the arrival of the new tractor to replace its predecessor which provided a sterling service cutting the grass for over 30 years.
The tractor comes with a new attachement, a flail mower and collector, which will be especially useful for creating and enhancing the newly planted areas of wildflower meadow.
The handover involved members of the Town Council, Councillor Alan Buckfield (the Mayor of Haverfordwest), members of the Racecourse Trust and the Pembrokeshire Nature Partnership.
Aethne Cooke from the Local Places for Nature Partnership provided the following statement to summarise the whole background to this valuable addition to our resources:
Local Places for Nature, wildflower meadow and tractor/mower
Each year, local nature partnerships across Wales receive Welsh Government Local Places for Nature grant funding. This funding is to be used for the specific purpose of creating and enhancing nature where people live and work, and where people access public services.
The Pembrokeshire Nature Partnership is delighted that it has been able to direct some of its Welsh Government Local Places for Nature grant towards purchase of this tractor and mower.
The Pembrokeshire Nature Partnership would like to thank the Haverfordwest Town Council, Haverfordwest Racecourse Public Park Trust, Portfield Recreation Committee and the Bridge Meadow Trust for working with us to make best use of this shared community tractor and mower.
The tractor and mower are to be used to create and enhance areas of wildflower meadow at the Upper & Lower Racecourse sites, and also to be made available for use at Priory Saltings and Bridge Meadow.
These green spaces are particularly important in a town setting such as Haverfordwest. We have in the last few years increased our understanding of the value of simply getting outside into nature for our physical and mental wellbeing. Creating areas of wildflower meadow in these areas will enhance this experience.
Wildflower meadows are some of our rarest and most species rich habitats. They are beautiful, pollinators love them, and they need less mowing that conventional lawns.
This tractor will allow these areas to be mown and importantly for the grass cuttings to be removed, reducing nutrients which allows the wildflowers to better compete with the grasses.
We have lost a staggering 97% of our meadows since the 1930s. These areas of meadow at both Racecourse sites, and the recently established meadow at Priory Saltings, will make an important contribution to the restoration of meadows in Pembrokeshire.
Finally, thank you to Peter Howe of PCC regeneration whose idea this was, to Gerald Rowlands of PCC Fleet Management for his invaluable help with procurement and to J E Lawrence & Son for supplying us with the tractor and mower.