Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Inspired by Squashed Toads

Julian Jones has worked for the Wildlife Trusts since 1997, the majority of that time in Radnorshire.  He became interested in Llandrindod lake in 1999 after witnessing thousands of toads trying to reach the lake and seeing hundreds of squashed toads and newts that failed to make it over the adjacent road.  After dozens of meetings and lots of cajoling and campaigning, the lake was designated a Local Nature Reserve in 2010.

In the recent Inspired by Nature writing competition Julian was one of the runners up with an article describing the changing fortunes of the lake at Llandrindod. It started off as a bog and with the arrival of the railway was re-engineered into a boating lake frequented by 80,000 visitors a year. Over the years different people had different ideas about what the lake needed. One of these in the 1950s was the farmer who thought a ton and a half of super phosphate fertiliser would improve things! Julian’s excellent article appeared in the autumn 2011 edition of Natur Cymru.

The competition is running again this winter. What we are looking for is a 1,000 word article on a subject of environmental or wildlife interest in Wales which inspires you. 1st prize £500 cash donated by WWF. 2nd prize a £500 place on the nature writing course at Tŷ Newydd, the national writers’ centre. Runner up prizes donated by Wildlife Trusts Wales include an overnight stay on Skomer - thank you. The competition is open to subscribers of Natur Cymru only and the closing date is 31st March 2012. Full details at

Julian on Gillian's right arm

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