Wales

Margam and Wepre parks' lottery £2.1m for renovations

Aerial view of Margam Country Park
Image caption £1.6m will be used to help restore features at historical buildings at Margam park

More than £2m is being spent restoring original features at two historical parks.

The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has awarded £1.6m to Margam Country Park near Port Talbot, which overlooks Swansea Bay.

A further £583,400 will be used to reinstate formal gardens at Wepre Park, Connah's Quay, Flintshire, as well as pay for other improvements.

The HLF said it was committed to supporting historic parks in Wales.

Margam park attracts more than 200,000 visitors a year.

Neath Port Talbot council said the money will be used to maintain buildings which include the remains of a 12th Century monastery, Georgian orangery as well as 19th Century Margam Castle.

The park also includes wood pastures, parkland and a walled deer park.

Image caption A picture of the demolished hall at Wepre Park

"This new project will be a big step forward in preserving and enhancing our local heritage for the benefit of residents and visitors alike," said Ali Thomas, leader of Neath Port Talbot which secured the funding.

In May, Flintshire council said it hoped to restore features at Wepre Country Park.

It was once the estate gardens and parkland to the Georgian Wepre Hall, which was flattened more than 50 years ago.

The money will go towards the creation of a community garden, improved footpaths and interpretation to help visitors explore the story of the park, its old hall gardens and the ruins of 11th Century Ewloe Castle.

"This funding will ensure that it is improved upon and safeguarded for future generations," said Flintshire council leader Aaron Shotton.

Image caption Ewloe Castle is surrounded on all sides by a heavily wooded area at Wepre Park

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