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Quinta awarded grant for its lake restoration

Christmas came early at the Lovell Quinta Arboretum in Swettenham, which was awarded a grant of around £44,000 to restore its lake just before the end of the year.

The arboretum was once the private garden of Sir Bernard Lovell, founder of Jodrell Bank. Sir Bernard’s keen interest in horticulture saw him gradually building the site over several decades into a fully-fledged arboretum, home to three national tree collections and many rare and unusual trees.

The lake, originally dug by Sir Bernard in the 1960s, was once a central feature of the site but has been in gradual decline despite several previous attempts to maintain it.

In an attempt to save it, Tatton Garden Society, the arboretum’s parent charity, put in a bid to the Veolia Environmental Trust, which supports community and environmental projects across England through the Landfill Communities Fund. The award was granted in full.

The work will include the fitting of an impermeable liner to prevent future leakage, and the landscaping of the area. The newly-restored lake will help to provide new habitat for wildlife and aquatic plants as well as being an asset for visitors and the wider community.

New benches will be installed to allow visitors to enjoy the beauty of the lake, which is lined with an avenue of red-twigged limes and provides an area for quiet reflection.

Sir Bernard’s daughter Judy Spence, who is still closely associated with the site, said: “This is truly wonderful news! A lot of people put a huge amount of hard work into getting this happy result, and it means more than I can say for the arboretum and the local community.”

David Skidmore, chair of Tatton Garden Society, added: “The society is delighted that we can now restore this much-loved feature in the arboretum.

“The visitors and community who use the site will enjoy seeing the lake once again and the wildlife, both plants and animals, will make use of this water habitat.

“I hope that, when it is complete, we will have many visitors enjoying the tranquillity of the Arboretum and learning about the conservation work of our wonderful collection of trees and shrubs.”

The Lovell Quinta Arboretum is located in Swettenham village, near Congleton, (CW12 2LF) behind the Swettenham Arms. For more information, visit lovellquintaarboretum.co.uk.

Dogs on leads are welcome. Admission is £2.50, which goes back into the maintenance of the site. Note that the pub is closed for refurbishment.

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