A tree planting project to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park has concluded at the end of last month, with more than 1,500 trees planted in community spaces and gardens around the National Park.

The project, which aimed to plant 70 trees in each National Park community to celebrate this milestone, was the brainchild of the late Councillor Reg Owens, a longstanding and respected Member of the National Park Authority.

A special tree planting day for the communities of Nolton and Roch took place in February and saw a hearty band of local volunteers come out to help plant 70 mixed hedgerow whips in the gaps around Victoria Hall playing field. Despite foggy conditions, the community spirit shone brightly, with two of the youngest volunteers doing an excellent job of helping dig holes for four apple trees, before staking and putting guards on them.

On the Pencaer peninsula, a community planting and giveaway event was held at St Nicholas Village Hall in April. After planting three apple trees on the bank behind the hall, locals were able to choose from four species of tree to take home with them. The event was rounded off by tea, cake and some wonderful discussions about all things related to trees and the National Park.

Park Authority Ranger Megan Pratt, who led two of the recent tree planting projects, said: “The tree planting initiative has transformed various communal spaces, from sports grounds to play areas, community gardens, and even churchyards, enriching the fabric of our communities. Additionally, residents were gifted native species, including young apple trees propagated from the Authority’s historic orchard at St. Brides, which will help to secure the future of the unusual heritage apple varieties growing there.

“As these 1,500 trees take root, we hope they will stand not only as testament to the legacy of Cllr Owens, but will contribute to the natural splendour of the National Park landscape next 70 years and beyond.”

To find out more about practical volunteering opportunities within the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park visit www.pembrokeshirecoast.wales/volunteering.