Swansea City back vital Gower Project
Swansea City has given its backing to the ‘Gower Project’ in a bid to help eradicate bovine TB in the area and ease the crippling mental and financial burden on local farmers and the impact on the Gower landscape.
With the Swans’ Fairwood training ground situated right in the heart of the Gower common, the club has seen for itself the devastating effect bovine TB has had on the farming community.
While the Gower became the first area in the UK to be designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty back in 1965, the reality of bovine TB has seen many of the local farms lose herds that had been bred over generations. As a result, many face an uncertain future.No
w an industry-led project, the first of its kind in Wales, has been launched with the backing from the likes of the Welsh Government, Swansea Council, Gower Heritage Centre, Tourism Swansea Bay, Gower Caravan Parks, the Swans and the farming community itself.
The aim of the project is to initially better control and subsequently eradicate TB on Gower through a four-year badger vaccination programme and a farmer engagement programme that includes enhanced cattle surveillance, biosecurity and risk management.
If successful, the project, the biggest of its type in the UK, could be a delivery model used in other areas across Wales. It will begin with a badger vaccination phase, with an estimated badger population of between 600 and 1200.
Stephen Crocker and local vet Ifan Lloyd of the Gower Project explained: “The project will contribute positively to maintaining traditional cattle husbandry practices that are a prominent feature of Gower heritage and to retain the distinctiveness of the historic landscape of the Gower.
“The long-term outputs will offer a more sustainable future for cattle farming, the environment and wildlife habitats on Gower. It will make a positive contribution to the well-being of local communities and future generations.’’
A Swansea City spokesperson added: “This is an important project that the club is happy to support.
“It will help protect the Gower community and the farms that have shaped this glorious landscape; a landscape and community where our staff and players train and live on a daily basis.
“I’m sure it will also be a project our supporters will fully support.’’
To date the project has raised around two-thirds of the funding, with a further £100,000 needed each year for the programme.
Further information is available HERE.
You can also donate much-needed funds to the project HERE.