New artwork creates a buzz in Alexandra Park, Hoole

10 September 2020

New artwork has created a buzz in Alexandra Park, Hoole, following the installation of pollinator habitats in the park.

The pollinator park project, commissioned by Cheshire West and Chester Council's Parks and Open Spaces team has created an amazing variety of bespoke homes for bees and bugs made from a variety of materials including willow, birch, bamboo and metal.

Artist, Katayoun Dowlatshahi, was selected and commissioned to design the habitats, the project was due to be completed by 31 March 2020 but was delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The artworks made their debut in the park during August. A live willow shelter will be added to sweep around the bench in the meadow in January 2021 because this must be installed in winter months for the willow to survive.

The art installations support additional work which will improve facilities including the pathway network, refurbishment of the toilet facility and creation of a pollinator planting scheme in the park.

Cabinet Member for Climate Emergency, Councillor Matt Bryan, said: "This is a wonderful project, it has engaged with allotment holders, sports groups, schools, families and local residents, and has shown that communities understand the importance of encouraging more pollinator insects into our open spaces. Increasing biodiversity in our parks and tackling climate change to protect ecosystems in the borough is high on the Council's agenda.

"We will be asking for more support to help enhance these thriving urban pockets of green space. The project team has been overwhelmed with positive feedback and as we continue to develop our green network.

"The new artwork is fabulous and we now have the most amazing bee and bug hotels in the Park, definitely five star quality."

The project was made possible due to £100,000 funding from FCC Communities Foundation (formerly WREN) as well as the Council. The grant was awarded due to the Council's acknowledgement of the current biodiversity crisis and that education and conservation will play a key role in the project.

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