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A Way with Willowherb at Loudon Pond

Volunteers sought Thurs 16 Aug at Loudon Pond

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  • Date posted
    13 August 2018

An invasive and rampant non-native plant is threatening to overwhelm the Rigside and Douglas Water Community Nature Reserve, suffocating the young trees and flowers which have been planted, and preventing access to large parts of the reserve.

Local volunteers, with the help of Clydeside Community Initiatives and supported by Community Action Lanarkshire, are going to clear the footpaths and rescue the young trees by cutting down the jungle of Rosebay Willowherb before it sets seed again, and would like you to come along and join in.

“A way with Willowherb” will take place on Thursday 16th August, 10:30am - 2pm, meeting at the entrance to the reserve, opposite Salisbury Place.

Loudon Pond community nature reserve is a haven for all kinds of wildlife, but is under threat from an invasive plant and is at risk of being overwhelmed.

Rigside and Douglas Water Community Nature Reserve, known locally as Loudon Pond, sits between the village of Douglas Water and the river itself, and is a precious resource for the local community and for many from further afield. The nature reserve is managed by the Loudon Pond and Ponfeigh Glen Association, and a new generation of committee members is now trying to revitalise the reserve and create access-for-all paths to make it a place worth visiting and to make it easier for everybody to visit.

Once the site of the Douglas mine and the old miner’s rows of Douglas Water (referred to by many as Ponfeigh), the area was reclaimed by nature after the mine’s closure and is now an oasis for birds and other wildlife.

Andy Wallace, Chair of the Association, says, “The nature reserve around Loudon Pond has tremendous potential as an environmental safe place where people from the local community and further afield can enjoy beauty, peace and solitude of the countryside in South Lanarkshire; an area of heavy industry now returned to nature. Volunteers getting involved will be able to say in future years that they helped to create it.”

He continues, “Visitors will have no idea how much effort went into taking a derelict, fly-tipping eyesore and creating a nature reserve, but they will surely appreciate the efforts of those people who keep it open for everybody”

The clear-up event has been organised through Community Action Lanarkshire, a LEADER funded programme aiming to support communities in rural Lanarkshire.

Ewan Bachell, Development Officer with Community Action Lanarkshire, says, “We are very excited to be working with the association and helping them to build on the fantastic work they’ve been doing in the reserve. We hope that this event will attract more volunteers and be a step towards reinvigorating this hidden gem for local people and visitors to the area.”

The event is open to everybody, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone 01555 664211 if you would like to come along. Tools and tea/coffee will be provided by Clydesdale Community Initiatives, please bring your own packed lunch as well as suitable clothing and footwear for working outdoors.

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