National nature reserve
Famed for centuries for its hospitality, Gregynog was recently awarded the status of National Nature Reserve, as well as previously being designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest.
Designated by Natural Resource Wales, it confirms the 750 acre estate of Gregynog as one of Wales’ most important sites for ancient parkland and wood-pasture habitats, veteran trees, and nationally important lichens, insects, and other wildlife, supported by these rare habitats. The Great Wood at Gregynog is one of few remaining ancient oak and lichen-rich woodlands, home to an extremely rare lichen never seen before in Wales. Lichen are important for producing antibiotics, life-saving drugs and nutrients.
This declaration also highlights Gregynog as a place where the public can come to explore the countryside and its woodland. To encourage visits to enjoy the reserve, there have been a number of footpaths created through the parkland, in a partnership project between Gregynog and Natural Resource Wales, to make it easier for everyone to enjoy walking here.
The reserve also plays host to a vast range of wildlife – from hares to breeding birds, including the wood warblers, pied flycatchers and redstarts; to great crested newts and dragonflies which you will see in and around the many ponds. Gregynog also boasts a number of different species of bats and provides feeding areas for the important lesser horseshoe bat.
Another recent improvement to the estate are two the beautifully restored lakes, which have been designed to enhance the environmental conditions for wildlife.
This combination of walks, gardens and nature makes Gregynog a first-rate choice for walking, picnics or simply to relax and take in the views.
Gregynog is proud to hold a silver Green Tourism award for its work to protect the environment.
‘Very special’ because of the internationally important lichens and fungi that exist in the Great Wood.
Ray Woods, British Lichen Society