National Trust in £1m land purchase
A stretch of coast which is rich in wildlife and archaeology has been bought by the National Trust for more than £1 million as it launches a new vision for looking after the nation's coastlines.
The Trust has acquired land on Great Orme in north Wales, the latest acquisition in a 50-year Neptune Coastline Campaign to protect special seaside areas.
The acquisition includes the 140-acre (56 hectare) Parc Farm, with its views of Anglesey and the Welsh coast, and grazing rights to 720 acres of headland, allowing the Trust to help protect the habitats of unique and rare plants and animals.
Great Orme is also rich in archaeology and has the world's biggest prehistoric mine, dating back 4,000 years to the Bronze Age, while the first-ever book in Wales was printed in one of its caves.
Justin Albert, director for the trust in Wales, said: "The Great Orme is a very special place, loved by the millions of people that visit the classic seaside town of nearby Llandudno every year.
"The coastline encapsulates the beating heart of what the National Trust is about - looking after places of natural beauty rich in wildlife.
"That includes sub-species of silver-studded blue and grayling butterflies and a plant, the wild cotoneaster, which can only be found here."
The National Trust looks after 775 miles of coastline across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and is launching a new vision to protect the rich wildlife, culture and beauty of the coasts, allow greater access and create space for natural changes to occur.
A key part of the vision is to support the creation of new coastal pathways and access all around the beaches, cliffs and seashores of England, Wales and Scotland.
Helen Ghosh, the Trust's director-general, said: "Over 50 years the extraordinary generosity and support of people from across the world has enabled us to buy some of the most beautiful, dramatic and diverse coastline on these islands enabling people to enjoy them and protecting them from development for generations to come.
"This campaign has tapped into that deep sense of connection with, and love of the coast. Without this, our coastline could look very different today.
"Our priorities for the future are to help create opportunities for people to enjoy the coast , protect our wonderful coast heritage and to enrich the wildlife living on our shores.
"We strongly support the plans for a coastal path that allows people to enjoy the whole coastline, walking through a landscape that is rich in wildlife and heritage.
"We'll work with government agencies, partners and landowners to help deliver this vision."
Wales opened its 870-mile coastal footpath three years ago, which the Trust said was proving hugely popular but more work was needed to continue improving the quality of the path in some sections, something it was committed to work with Natural Resources Wales on.
The trust said it supported the Government's pledge to open up thousands of miles of footpaths around the English coasts by 2020.
It is also working with partners in Northern Ireland to find ways of opening up access to the coastline.
The vision for the coast also aims to work with communities to create space for natural processes that shape the coastline and help wildlife to move and flourish.
The trust said it wanted to create a seascape and coastline that was beautiful and would continue to champion marine conservation zones, working closely with other organisations to help create a network of marine protected areas.
It is also championing efforts to record coastline archaeology, support the coastal economy and invest in marine energy.