2013 marks the 75th anniversary of the work of WTSWW in the west of its patch. This month in our regular archive item we look back at the golden jubilee celebrations of 1988.
Dyfed Wildlife Trust Bulletin No. 46, March 1988
1938 ~ Golden Jubilee ~ 1988
At a meeting held in the Gold Room, Haverfordwest on 26 February 1938 a group of some 70 enthusiasts came together to form the Pembrokeshire Bird Protection Society. The Dyfed Wildlife Trust, formerly the West Wales Trust for Nature Conservation, can thus trace its history back to the pioneering days shortly before the Second Wold War and is, after Norfolk, the second of the nature conservation trusts to be founded.
The Dyfed Wildlife Trust covers the whole of Dyfed, and has a responsibility for all wildlife, to provide protection, advice and opportunities for enjoyment of the wildlife and the wild places in one of the most beautiful and varied parts of Great Britain.
A major task has been the establishment of nature reserves. The first, Cardigan Island, was acquired in 1944, now there are 59. These nature reserves are found in all parts, from the uplands and valleys of the eastern march to the sea coasts of Cardigan Bay and the westernmost islands of Pembrokeshire. Some of the sites are of international importance like Skokholm and Skomer which contain the largest colony of Manx Shearwater in the world, together with numerous other seabirds, wildflowers in profusion, and on Skomer, Grey Seals and a unique Bank Vole- the Skomer Vole. The Trust manages fine woodlands like Castle Woods, Llandeilo with the ruined castle of the Lords of Dinefwr, the 90 acres of woodland close to the Rheidol Falls, and Pengelli Forest, a superb ancient woodland near Eglwyswrw with one of the longest documented histories of any wood in Wales. The Trust is now raising funds to purchase the site and thus ensure its future. Wherever you travel in Dyfed you will pass close to other reserves- lakes, meadows, heathlands mires and reedbeds, all important for their wildlife and all protected by the Dyfed Wildlife Trust.
All of the nature reserves are open to the public; some lend themselves particularly in this direction like Castle Woods where a woodland information centre is now operated in the long disused Llandyfesiant Church. At Goodwick Moor a boardwalk has been constructed through the reedbeds and a short descriptive leaflet produced for visitors. On Skomer a major visitor centre is under development in a section of one of the ruined farm buildings. Here nearly 2,000 school children land each year and are guided around by the warden or other staff. As funds allow, the Trust has ambitious plans to provide more opportunities at its major reserves.
Dyfed Wildlife Trust Golden Jubilee Dinner: Friday 26th February 1988 Gold Room, Forum, Haverfordwest.
Left to right: BACK ROW- Stephen Sutcliffe, Skomer Island Warden; Tom Heal, Chairman; Chris Linney, Hon. Secretary; Cecil Lambourne, Council of Management; Jack Donovan, Vice President; David Mansel-Lewis, President; Monty Philpin, Auditor; Morgan Garrett, Accountant; David Saunders, Director; Michael Betts, Skokholm Island Warden; Stephen Byrne, MSC Agency Manager. FRONT ROW- Anna Sutcliffe; Brenda Hibberd, Sales & Membership Officer; Holly Taylor, Conservation Officer; Johnny Morris, Guest Speaker; Liz Gardner, Development Officer; June Glennerster, Administrative Officer; Sue Barclay, Skokholm Island Cook.