New community ranger for Middlefield area
The community of Middlefield in Aberdeen has now got its very own countryside ranger – and one of her first duties will be helping to improve the habitat for wildlife in the park being created as part of the Middlefield Project.
Vicky Ewan is to promote and support environmental activities in the park among residents, along with undertaking curriculum-related environmental activities in conjunction with local schools.
The Middlefield Project is a £1.546million scheme which is creating a new user-friendly community park out of scrubland, and it includes raising the Scatterburn from underground to above ground to work as a flood alleviation scheme.
The project is also creating new pedestrian and cycle-friendly paths, improved pavements on two streets beside the development, and installing new landscaping to create an attractive park area which will be user-friendly to the residents living in the surrounding areas. It is this new landscaping that Vicky is ensuring will be biodiverse and encourage more wildlife to live in the area.
Vicky said: “‘My role will be to promote and support environmental activities within the new park which is currently being developed in Middlefield, as well as other green spaces in the area, to members of the local community.
“I’ll also be working with schools in the Middlefield area to support curriculum-linked environmental and outdoor learning. I’m really looking forward to getting out and about in Middlefield and getting to know the local schools and community, as well as ways we can conserve local biodiversity.
“I can’t wait to see the community getting outside and enjoying the recreational and educational opportunities within this exciting new park and other locations within the Middlefield area’.
Contractors have finished work on some of the site including raising the Scatterburn, adding fencing at the allotments, and forming the bunds. Work on other parts of the site including creating the cycle/walking paths is likely to start soon although the ground will have to dry out considerably before the landscaping work can start.
Aberdeen City Council flooding spokesperson Councillor Jennifer Stewart said: “It’s great to see work progressing on the Middlefield Project and local residents will be keenly watching the progress.
“It is fantastic that Middlefield is to have its own community ranger too and the work that Vicky will be carrying out for both the new parkland around the Scatterburn and other green areas in the community will help people to see how much wildlife there is their local area.
“I’m looking forward to watching the Middlefield Project finish over the coming months and then seeing what a difference it will make to contain flooding for the local area.”
The scheme includes £500K from Aberdeen City Council for flood alleviation works, £426,813 from Scottish Natural Heritage for environmental improvements, £150,445 from Nestrans for pedestrian priority works on Provost Rust Drive and Manor Avenue, and a provisional award of £469,093 from Sustrans for Active Travel route improvements. The provisional award looks to be agreed once Aberdeen City Council and Sustrans confirm designs.
The park is to be given a new name, which has been decided by the local steering group, when the work is finished.
PIC CAPTION: New community ranger Vicky Ewan with Aberdeen City Council flooding spokesperson Councillor Jennifer Stewart at the site of the Middlefield Project