In April 2016, after a long fundraising campaign, Monmouthshire Meadows Group was finally able to purchase Kingcoed Meadows, 11.8 acres of unimproved grassland near Raglan (OS Grid Ref SO 427 057)
We received grants from various trusts including the Banister Trust, Waterloo Foundation, Alan Evans Memorial Trust, Foyle Foundation, New Grove Trust, Gwent Wildlife Trust, the Ricardo Crawley Trust and Waitrose Community Fund, then in December 2015 we received confirmation that Biffa Award are to give us £45,000 towards the purchase of the fields. Biffa Award is a multi-million pound fund that helps to build communities and transform lives through awarding grants to community and environmental projects across the UK (more information on www.biffa-award.org).
We were also helped by the tremendous generosity shown by so many MMG members, well-wishers and local and national organisations. We knew it was an ambitious target, but we had to give it a go to save these precious wild flower meadows.
The two meadows used to be part of Kingcoed Farm. Originally semi-improved and rather species poor, they have been sympathetically managed by their current owners for 12 years. As a result, Spotted Orchids, Southern Marsh Orchids, Knapweed, Common Cat’s Ear, Rough Hawkbit, Bird’s-foot Trefoil, Tufted Vetch and many other plants have colonised and spread. In wet areas a diversity of rushes and sedges has appeared, and even Adder’s-tongue Fern.
The site will be used for events and educational activities, to demonstrate what can be achieved with the right management regime. There is a public footpath across the fields, and members of the public are encouraged to walk around the fields, keeping to the edges to protect the wildflower reserve. There is an interpretive board at the gate near the road.