Friends of Silverburn Park (FOSPS) Volunteers and Fife Coast and Countryside Trust (FCCT) have joined together to regenerate a disused pond at Silverburn Park – a 27-acre public park and campsite on the Fife Coastal Path – into a wildlife haven with pond dipping platform and wildlife hide.
The initiative which is supported by Fife Employment Access Trust (FEAT) the mental health charity which manages Silverburn Park saw FCCT Countryside Rangers Deirdre Munro and Dallas Seawright work with the community group Friends of Silverburn Park.
FOSPS volunteers had cleared a stand of dense bramble which has dominated the south side of the pond. Unfortunately, this work created large patches of bare mud and earth which neither offers cover to wildlife nor is visually attractive.
Commenting on FCCT’s involvement Countryside Ranger Deirdre Munro said, ‘We were able to address this issue by offering pondside vegetation from well-established donor sites, including Petrie’s Pond at Lochore Meadows. A variety of pondside plants, complete with plenty of mud clinging to the roots, which would harbour all sorts of small wildlife that would also be welcome in the new habitat.’
She continued, ‘The first batch of plants has now been collected and planted at the new site where they will help to create a valuable wildlife habitat. The work is ongoing and a good example of how working in partnership can help to deliver positive environmental improvements which help the local area, its wildlife, and people.’
FOSP’s member, Dougie Saunders, said. ‘I have been associated with Silverburn Park for over 40 years, having spent many happy times there with my family. From speaking to others as they come through the park this is a common theme. In retirement I now find I have the time to put something back and last year became aware that Silverburn Park was looking for members to join their Friends Group. FOSP has many great ideas and plans going forward but there is no doubt that this past year has had significant challenges. Plans have been in place for some time to restore the pond area, bringing it back to life. FCCT has been instrumental in providing advice and donations of pond plants from around Fife for which we are very grateful.’
It is an exciting time at Silverburn Park with the former Flax Mill being redeveloped, with an opening scheduled for late 2025 early 2026, creating a multi-million-pound visitor centre and community hub. When fully operational, the Silverburn Flax Mill complex is projected to generate annually 26 jobs and £637k of household employment income in Levenmouth, a further 11 Jobs in the rest of Fife, with an additional two in other parts of Scotland and four in other parts of the UK. It is set to generate £2.5m of output in Fife and £1.26m of Fife with a further £0.58m of output and £0.29m elsewhere in Scotland and rest of UK.