11am until 5pm
An entry fee of £2 for adults will cover entry to all the meadows.
Contacts: Maggie Biss 01989 750740
Steph Tyler 01600 719890
ABOUT MONMOUTHSHIRE MEADOWS GROUP
Flower-rich meadows and pasture were once common throughout Monmouthshire, but over the past 50 years much of this semi-natural grassland has been lost. Members of the Monmouthshire Meadows Group are trying to redress this issue by managing their meadows in a manner which will encourage and preserve our native flower-rich meadows and pasture. This open day provides a marvellous opportunity to walk around and view some of these meadows belonging to our members and to get a feel for how the Monmouthshire landscape would have looked before intensive farming methods were adopted.
Tymawr Convent grounds have been open before but are a popular site. There is an apple orchard and hay meadow with a wonderful diversity of flowers, as well as seats where you can sit and enjoy the spectacle. Flowers include Spotted, Pyramidal and Twayblade Orchids, Red Clover, Birds-foot Trefoil and Ox-eye Daisies and many more.
Directions: Ty Mawr Convent can be found from the Monmouth to Trellech road where it is signposted from the junction towards the Whitebrook valley but take the left fork. Continue along the lane for ½ mile and the convent is signposted on the right. Alternatively from Penallt, go back towards the Trellech to Monmouth road but take the first turn from the village crossroads to the left. Where this minor road is joined by another road, continue for a few yards and bear right. The Convent is about ½ mile along on the left. Park in the Convent grounds.
Site B – New Grove Farm and meadows, NP25 4AF
New Grove Farm is owned by Peter and Pam Lloyd. Their fields and land by the entrance drive is beautiful species-rich grassland. Their field lies adjacent to the Gwent Wildlife Trust reserve that is made up of four adjacent meadows. The Lloyds’ fields and the northern two fields of the GWT reserve are amongst the very best wildflower meadows in Britain – their grassland flora is indicative of an unbroken history of traditional management. In contrast, the southern two fields have been reseeded and fertilised in the past but the Trust is now working to restore their past glory. In June there is an amazing profusion of common spotted orchids. Twayblade, Adder’s-tongue fern and moonwort have also been recorded here.
Directions: From Monmouth, leave south on the B4293, signposted Trellech and Mitchel Troy. Approximately 1 mile from Monmouth, take the left fork, signposted Trellech , Penallt and Chepstow. Continue along the B4293 up the hill and past the turning to Whitebrook and The Narth on the left. Soon on your right you will see a wind turbine in a small field; turn right soon after this into a tree-lined drive to the house. You can walk from the Lloyds’ land into the GWT Reserve
Site C – Dingle Cottage, Botany Bay, NP16 6NJ
There are two small fields owned by Carole Ayling and her husband which have a flora typical of the neutral Wye valley pastures (MG5 grassland). There is diverse interest with a wetter area where Spotted Orchids abound.
Directions: From Catbrook follow the road to Tintern and immediately after you pass a turn in woodland signed Harold Johns you will see a line of houses on the right. The Aylings’ house is the first house that you see.
Site D – The Poplars Meadow, Whitelye, Catbrook, NP16 6NP
Several small fields with a diversity of plants; some of the soil is quite acidic and wet so supports some interesting species.
Directions: go to the chapel at Whitelye and follow MMG signs down a small road alongside the chapel
Site E – Pasture adjacent to Yew Tree Cottage, Lone Lane, Penallt NP254AJ
This is a 6 acre south-facing pasture owned by Steph and Lindsay Tyler with a great range of plants and butterflies. It is fringed by huge Small-leaved Lime trees and has various internal hedges. Plants include Creeping Restharrow, Burnet Saxifrage, abundant Knapweed and Birds foot Trefoil and Rough Hawkbit.
From the crossroads in Penallt go down towards the Boat Inn and Redbrook, signed unsuitable for heavy vehicles. After half a mile, just past Lone Farm, look out for Yew tree Cottage on the left. Parking will be signed from there.