AMBITIOUS plans to turn a former golf course into a new woodland haven on the borders of Halton will be unveiled to the public this weekend.

The Woodland Trust has developed a scheme to convert the former Frodsham golf course site into what it said would be a 'haven for nature' and communities. Over the next 50 years, the project will link the existing Woodland Trust sites at Snidley Moor, Woodhouse Hill and Frodsham Hill Woods, with other areas of adjoining woodland.

The Trust said it will enhance biodiversity by providing new habitats, capture carbon to help fight climate change, and provide access to nature for local people and visitors.  The site will be developed as native broadleaf woodland and all trees planted will help to grow The Mersey Forest and the larger Northern Forest, which stretches from Liverpool to the Yorkshire coast.

Neil Oxley, site manager at the Woodland Trust, said:  "This is a really exciting new site for the Woodland Trust, close to urban areas and providing a vital area for wildlife and recreation.

"Cheshire as a whole is low in tree cover so this new woodland will provide vital tree cover and help us tackle the twin threats of climate change and biodiversity loss.”

With tree cover between six and seven per cent in Merseyside and Cheshire, compared to the national average of 13 per cent, project chiefs said the site will provide vital green space as well as becoming a 'beacon' for combating climate change.

Tim Oliver, Trees for Climate Coordinator at The Mersey Forest, added: “We’re pleased to be working alongside the Woodland Trust to help create new native woodland in this area.

"Creating more woodlands in and around our communities helps to connect people with nature, improves people’s health and wellbeing as well as providing habitat for local wildlife to thrive.”

The team said the new woodland will help protect the existing ancient semi-natural and secondary woodlands nearby. They said it will have a varied and diverse woodland structure interspersed with grassy paths and open glades. There will be a network of footpaths for informal public access across the site with views of the Sandstone Ridge, River Mersey, Liverpool and the Welsh Hills.

The site will also be delivering community engagement and education through volunteering and space for outdoor learning.

To find out more about the Woodland Trust’s plans, visit its consultation this  Saturday and Sunday, 10.30am-3.30pm at Frodsham Community Centre on Fluin lane.