Duchy rescues orchids for council

Horticulture expert Anne Osman, from Duchy College Rosewarne in Cornwall has been on a mercy mission to rescue orchids from the area surrounding South Crofty mine site near to the campus.

Cornwall Environmental Consultants (CEC) are working with Cornwall Council to ensure the correct procedures are followed when dealing with ecological issues during the implementation of the Camborne, Pool, Redruth East-West Link scheme.

Steve Crummay and Jenny Stuart from CEC identified several colonies of Southern Marsh Orchids and contacted Duchy College's research scientist Anne Osman.

Osman said: "The Wildlife and Countryside Act states that it is an offence to disturb orchids but contractors are exempt if building needs to go ahead. The council are not obligated but have chosen to preserve this colony."

The plants have been taken to Duchy College Rosewarne where they are being introduced to their new homes, by two of the campus ponds and on the banks of a stream.

Cornwall Council construction manager Dave Simpson said: " Often the focus for development projects such as this one is on the economic benefits it brings, but on this occasion the project team have identified some important wildlife and are able to take the right steps to conserve this by working with local partners."

Osman added: "Cornwall Council clearly care about our natural heritage and are actively trying to preserve it for future generations. I'm delighted that the Council are doing everything in their power to protect our environment through this development."

Stuart said: "This is a great achievement for the project team and Duchy College. Whilst translocation should not be considered lightly, and specialist support is required throughout the process, in this case it has saved around 75 important plants which would otherwise have been lost."

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