New wildlife garden gets a green thumbs up

A brilliant day of wildlife activities, plus the magic of a new wildlife garden and play area at the National Park Visitor Centre, near Libanus made its formal opening an amazing success on Saturday 14th June.

The weather forecasters thankfully got it right and over 1,000 people enjoyed a great day of sunny weather for the event at the Natioanl Park Visitor Centre, near Libanus.  A brilliant day of wildlife activities, plus the magic of a wildlife garden drew Visitors from near and far, as the National Park Visitor Centre hosted a day of fun of pond dipping, minibeast hunts, falconry, face painting, a bouncy castle, wood turning, metal working, glass blowing, leather work and bike hire.

The wildlife fun day had been planned to celebrate the launch of the new wildlife garden, with a lovely pond as its centrepiece and new play area installation which will help boost visitors to the centre during the summer season.

Over the past few months, many organisations have been involved in creating the beautiful space at the centre including the Brecknock Wildlife Trust, Gwernyfed and Brecon High Schools, Keep Wales Tidy, the Probation Service, volunteers and school groups, and staff at the National Park Visitor Centre have been working around the clock to create the wildlife garden for its visitors to enjoy.

Cllr Geraint Hopkins said at the launch:  “We were delighted to welcome so many people of all ages drawn to the activities at the National Park Visitor Centre.  The obvious enthusiasm generated by experiencing and learning about wildlife was a pleasure to see.  We are so grateful to the hard work that has gone into making the wildlife garden and play area such a superb venue to visit.  To those who couldn’t join us for this event, I would urge you to visit the Centre, bring your children and grandchildren and discover this wonderful opportunity to connect with nature.”

Aiming to bring people closer to nature on their doorstep, the garden has been funded and supported by Natural Resources Wales and the National Park Authority.

The unique pond, which was built in February, is thriving and has become a magnet for pond skaters, diving beetles, frogs, dragonflies, newts, pond snails and and other water invertebrates, blackbirds, chaffinches and much more. Wildlife garden volunteers have been creating minibeast habitats and pond dipping for new school groups who will visit the centre this summer.

Andrea Mansfield, Manager at the National Park Visitor Centre said:  “We’ve had lots of positive comments from visitors since we started this project and we hope that this unique garden will inspire people how to make their own gardens friendlier for different kinds of wildlife – even if they have limited space.  We’ve already seen an increase in bees, butterflies and insect life since we’ve built this garden and we hope to make further improvements as the year goes forward.  It’s taken many hours of hard work to get it looking like this today and everyone who’s played a part should be really proud of themselves. The garden’s well on its way to becoming the peaceful little haven of wildlife and nature it should be.”

The Wildlife Garden was officially launched on Saturday 14th June and aims to encourage the beginnings of a lifelong interest in wildlife and gardening. The National Park Education Service will also be using the pond and wildlife garden as education tools for school visits. Please contact the education team to make a booking on 01874 624437.

The National Park Visitor Centre is just one of the attractions within the 520miles of the Bannau Brycheiniog National Park. For more information about Visitor Centre, go to or call the Visitor Information Team on 01874 623366.