Council announces plans for lower pond desilting and repairs at Priory Park

Plans are being put forward to clean out and enhance the lower pond in Priory Park for the first time in over 30 years.

The works, which will see the pond desilted and repaired, will form part of the council's Five Year Plan to improve the play area and biodiversity enhancements in the popular Great Malvern park.

Following the recent desilting and repair of the upper pond in Priory Park, which has reinstated water flow into the lower pond further, more significant works are required to the lower pond to improve water quality and biodiversity.

Desilting will enable the pond to start capturing carbon again and provide the right environment for plants to grow.

In addition to desilting, the project also includes:

  • Specialist fish removal prior to draining.
  • Installation of gabion baskets to create planting shelves.
  • Wetland planting to create habitat for aquatic invertebrates and insects.
  • Tree works to reduce overshading and leaf litter accumulation.
  • Installation of wildlife features including kingfisher perch and habitat log piles.
  • Non-native shrub thinning or removal and re-planting with native.
  • Shrubs and woodland bulb planting.

The project will take place early in 2022, to avoid key amphibian and bird breeding seasons and to ensure the least environmental impact to the wider park.

Up to 45% of the cost will be covered by a grant from Natural Networks that the council has negotiated, greatly reducing the cost to council taxpayers.

The proposals will be put forward at Executive Committee Meeting on Tuesday 18 January 2022.

Cllr Peter Whatley Portfolio Holder for Resources at Malvern Hills District Council said: "After the successful completion and improvements of the upper pond we are really keen to progress with works to the lower pond. The desilting and repairs will create a more sustainable ecosystem, which will reduce the frequency of interventions of this scale. These works are essential and all part of our commitment to improving and making the most of our wonderful environment."

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Pictured: Cllr Peter Whatley, Portfolio Holder for Resources at Malvern Hills District Council, with Priory Ward members Cllr Beverley Nielsen and Cllr Cynthia Palmer.
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