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National Trust in £250K Snowdonia Appeal

A quarter of a million pounds is urgently needed to repair ‘broken’ paths and restore wildlife habitats in Snowdonia, the National Trust has said. The conservation charity, which looks after almost 23,500 hectares in the National Park, is hoping to raise the shortfall from a fundraising campaign launched today (6 February). 

An eroded footpath in Snowdonia that's in urgent need of repair, 207 kb
An eroded footpath in Snowdonia that's in urgent need of repair
© The National Trust

The National Trust already spends hundreds of thousands of pounds annually on conservation work in Snowdonia. But a recent review has revealed the scale of footpath erosion, with repairs particularly needed to more than two and half miles of the most heavily used paths.

Of particular concern are areas alonside the Watkin Path, where habitats are being trampled, making it harder for Ring Ouzels to find insects to feed their chicks; and in the Glyderau, where there’s an issue with the woolly hair moss that grows along the paths being crushed.

Rangers have urged the public to get behind the campaign in order to be able to get to work immediately, restoring the eroded trails and protecting rare wildlife like the endangered Snowdon beetle. 

Rhys Thomas, National Trust ranger in Snowdonia, said:

“Thousands of people come from all around the world to enjoy Snowdonia’s rugged beauty. But Snowdonia isn’t as tough as it first appears."

"More and more people are coming to enjoy the beautiful scenery in Snowdonia. On Snowdon, Wales’ highest mountain, we’ve seen the number of walkers double since 2007."

More than four million people visit Snowdonia every year, with 450,000 walking up Snowdon alone, according to the Trust's figures.

“Now, broken paths are putting Snowdonia’s nature in danger" says Rhys Thomas.

"When they break up and turn into mud it can be incredibly difficult to know where to step."

“Delicate upland habitats are being flattened."

“I’ve been building and rebuilding paths in the area for eight years. It’s tiring, time-consuming work – involving tens of volunteers shifting tonnes of stone by hand, vehicle and helicopter."

“But it’s vital to repair paths if we’re serious about protecting creatures like the Snowdon beetle that in Britain are only found in Snowdonia.”

On average it costs £180 to build just one metre of footpath.

The £250,000 appeal will enable National Trust rangers and volunteers to restore two and a half miles of paths in Snowdonia.

The appeal, which is the latest in the National Trust’s long-running Snowdonia Appeal, will run until the end of 2017. To donate visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/snowdonia-appeal 

 



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