Work has been completed to ensure even more people can enjoy a beautiful haven of nature and wildlife which is nestled high in the Llantrisant hilltops. Enjoy our picture special from the common.
Rhondda Cynon Taf Council secured external funding in order to undertake the improvements at Graig Common, improving access and installing colourful, interesting information boards about the wildlife that can be found there.
Already a popular spot for walkers and nature-lovers, it is hoped the investment at the grazing land will entice even more residents to take advantage of the stunning natural beauty that surrounds them.
Funding from the Rights of Way Improvement Plan, which is managed by Natural Resource Wales and provided by the Welsh Government, has made the project possible.
In recent months, access to the Site of Importance for Nature Conservation and Open Access land has been improved. Public rights of way routes have been maintained in such a way as to protect and benefit the biodiversity, while also allowing informal exploration of the land.
Paths were cut back with wide splays to allow some of the rarer plants on the site to grow and flourish as, previously, they competed for light with the more dominant bracken and suffered as a result.
Wider paths also allow for wider passing points between the cattle that graze on the land and the walkers who enjoy it. As well as existing livestock on the common, the Llantrisant Freemen, who own the common, are looking to reintroduce a number of impressive Highland Cattle back on the land soon.
The land is filled with slow worms, butterflies and different plant species such as dog violet and bluebells. As well as being a natural haven to explore, the common also affords you beautiful views to the south of rolling, green TaffValley to Cardiff and across the Bristol Channel, and, to the north, the dramatically rugged and rising Rhondda landscape.
To ensure everyone who visits the outstanding area gets the best from it, two colourful, informative panels have been installed in the area, promoting the wildlife, biodiversity and history of the area and, importantly, to encourage responsible use of the pathways.
Cllr Robert Bevan, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Cabinet Member for Sustainable Development, Leisure and Tourism, said: “This is a key piece of work from the Council to preserve and celebrate public enjoyment of one of our many natural treasures.
“We are lucky to live in a beautiful county borough that is filled with wonderful open spaces, to which the public enjoy right of way. Here, people of all ages can get out in the fresh air and enjoy outstanding wildlife and biodiversity.
“From gentle strolls through relaxing pastures such as Graig Common to breath-taking treks to the highest mountain tops of the Cynon and Rhondda Valleys, there is something for everyone! There are scenery-focused walks, wildlife walks, lakeside strolls, walks accompanied by leaflets and MP3 downloads that take you back in time and more.”
Get out and about and enjoy walking and the open spaces – and public rights of way – across Rhondda Cynon Taf by visiting the Walks and Cycling pages of the Council website and our Heritage Trails website