Former WEC site opens as Local Nature Reserve to the public

The former Wolverhampton Environment Centre (Central Plant Nursery) has been transformed into a woodland beauty spot adjoining Smestow Valley Local Nature Reserve (LNR).

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The site, situated off Westacre Crescent, previously hosted four large derelict glass houses, ancillary buildings and a bungalow, which were not viable to bring back into use. 

Over the past eight months, the 5.8 hectares of land around the buildings has been transformed into an extension of the existing nature reserve.

Improvement works include woodland management, pond management, wildflower meadow creation, a community garden, new paths throughout to connect the area to the wider Smestow Valley LNR, new fingerpost signs and new entrances from the disused railway line pathway into the reserve.

Councillor Steve Evans, Cabinet Member for City Environment at City of Wolverhampton Council said: “I’m pleased to see the transformation of the former Wolverhampton Environment Centre – this is a fantastic addition to the existing green space.

“Making this land part of the local nature reserve will protect it against being built on by developers and preserve it for future generations to enjoy.”

The site will officially open to the public on Friday 29 March.

The improvement works follow the joint funding from the council and Black Country Blue Network ERDF grant of £285,000 to initially open-up and immediately improve the area being reassigned to the Local Nature Reserve and public open space.

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