AN AWARD-winning community conservation project featured on BBC's Countryfile focusing on the famous Pontcysyllte Aqueduct.

The Chirk Swifts and House Martins is a community conservation project set up to help change the fate of the declining Swift and House Martin population.

Hayley Garrod founded the company and is a Waterway Operative, maintaining the Llangollen and Montgomery Canals.

Denbighshire Free Press: Hayley proudly receiving her Community Group AwardHayley proudly receiving her Community Group Award (Image: Hayley Garrod)

She set up the company in response to Swifts and House Martins being moved to the red list after having lost half of them in just over 30-years.

Featuring on the most recent episode of BBC's Countryfile which showcased the Pontcysllte Aqueduct, Hayley was able to show the incredible work she does.

Hayley, originally from Lincolnshire, said: "I wanted to set up a community project to help inspire others to be aware of their plight and encourage them to provide nesting spaces.

"Since 2021, we have created over 100 new local nesting spaces and have reached out to local people with events in the summer."

Her primary role is to carry out all maintenance and repairs to all areas of the patch which has a thriving colony of Swifts nesting on Chirk Aqueduct which Hayley monitors with volunteers from the local area.

The focus of the Countyfile episode which aired on March 3 was on the canals and Hayley said she was 'incredibly lucky' to be put forward by the Canal and River Trust media team with her project as a link between the canals and the people who interact with them.

The Chirk Swifts and House Martins Group also proudly received the Bionet Community Group Award 2024 - a local nature partnership for North East Wales.

Hayley added: "I was super chuffed to have been nominated, but to win was a really special moment for me and the project."

The organisation has created and installed over 130 nesting spaces for swifts and house martins in the Chirk area since 2021, so the award is truly deserved for Hayley's impact on the environment and community.

The episode of Countryfile which aired on March 3 is available to watch now on BBC iplayer.