Community-powered conservation projects flourish with Force for Nature grants

Posted On : 22/03/2024

Nine local projects that were given a helping hand by the Force for Nature grants are now thriving and providing a much-needed boost to biodiversity and conservation, the fight against climate change and the availability of green spaces throughout the county.

Successful applicants in the last round of funding included: Pembrokeshire College, Stepaside CP School, Llawhaden Community Council, Dinas Wellbeing Hub, Simpson Cross Activities Group, Tabernacle United Reformed Church in Pembroke, and Warren-based Esteam.

Several months on, the groups have provided project updates, showcasing their remarkable progress – from the transformation of an old church garden into a diverse habitat, to the creation of a Welsh heritage orchard and the rewilding of unused land on education campuses.

Tabernacle URC’s “Garden through Time” was put to good use in the run-up to Christmas as the venue for a Community Nativity Trail, enabling local families to enjoy the festive sights and sounds, while appreciating the biodiversity improvements that have taken place.

The installation of oak signposts in December marked the completion of a rewilding project at Ysgol Harri Tudur, where pupils from Years 7 and 8 have since taken part in curriculum-linked outdoor activities. Remaining funds will be spent on seeds and native plantings to further enhance the newly restored areas.

Pembrokeshire College’s campus improvements were timed to coincide with the recent COP28 summit, where a day was dedicated to biodiversity. All animal habitats and lodgings, including swift boxes, have now been installed, and wildflower seeds have been sown on prepared ground.

Director of the Pembrokeshire Coast Charitable Trust, Katie Macro, said: “The Force for Nature grants not only provide financial support, but are also effective in fostering a sense of collective responsibility and stewardship among local communities.

“Over 600 volunteer hours have been accrued across the nine projects, with 15.95 acres of land enhanced.

“It has been an absolute delight to watch these projects grow and come to fruition and shows how small actions on a grassroots level can lead to significant change for the better.”

Set up in 2021, the Force for Nature mini grants scheme is funded by the Welsh Government and run by the Pembrokeshire Coast Charitable Trust. It offers grants of up to £4,000 to local projects within the local community that either support biodiversity, create new green spaces, or deliver on conservation or climate change.

Further information about the scheme is available at