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For day four of Wales Biodiversity Week we’re heading to a wonderfully biodiverse location just 10 minutes’ walk from where I live – my local cemetery!

160607 CathaysCem biodiversity (2)

Although Cathays Cemetery was first opened in 1859, its 110-acre grounds have remained largely undisturbed since the cemetery closed to new burials about 35 years ago, so it is the perfect environment for native plants to thrive, and that means it also provides a rich habitat for the birds, animals and insects that live in, amongst and on those plants. The cemetery also contains an arboretum of trees, both native and exotic, and some remnants of shrubs and flowers planted in Victorian times. No wonder the cemetery has been classified by Cardiff Council as a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation, and has held the Green Flag Award since 2009.

160607 CathaysCem biodiversity (1)

When it first opened, the cemetery wasn’t just a place to bury Cardiff’s dead; with few parks and recreation spaces available at that time, this was also considered a pleasant place to walk – and it still is!