Construction work is ongoing to replace the old footbridge to the reserve. An alternative route is available, but the Heron's Wing and Peter Scott hides will be closed until the work is complete. We apologise for any inconvenience.


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Words for Wetlands: Award-winning poet Rae Howells takes up residency at WWT Llanelli Wetland Centre

WWT Llanelli Wetland Centre is thrilled to announce the start of a new poet residency as award-winning Gower poet Rae Howells takes up residence at the centre, using its stunning wetlands and diverse wildlife as inspiration for her craft.

Rae joins the centre as part of WWT’s year-long programme of events, Words for Wetlands, which launched in March. Words For Wetlands invites everyone to explore the superpowers of wetlands using the incredible power of words to get creative, make connections with nature and inspire positive change.

During her tenure, Rae will be deeply immersed in all kinds of wetland habitats, surrounded by rare species, and getting her hands dirty with the reserve team to connect with WWT’s conservation work. This hands-on approach will serve as the catalyst for new poems that celebrate the beauty and importance of wetlands, including a special piece dedicated to the unique character and inhabitants of Llanelli's wetlands.

In addition, Rae will host poetry writing workshops to encourage others to try writing their own wild poetry. Later in the year, she’ll curate a selection of her works for display in the centre’s birdwatching hides, offering visitors a chance to reflect on the beauty of the surrounding nature while enjoying their wildlife observations. Audio versions of the poems will be available.

Rae Howells said: “I am delighted to be taking up the role of poet in residence at Llanelli Wetlands Centre. Wetlands are a vital green link in our battle to save nature against the worst effects of climate change, and I am excited to help tell the story of wetlands and the wonderful wildlife that lives there as part of the Words for Wetlands programme.

"As well as writing a poem for the Wetlands Centre, I am really looking forward to working with people through activities such as poetry workshops and working on a poetry trail for everyone to enjoy. I can't wait to get my waders on and start work!"

“We are incredibly honoured to welcome Rae Howells as our first poet in residence,” says Jessica Thompson, spokesperson for WWT Llanelli Wetland Centre. “Her passion for nature and exceptional talent for capturing its essence in words make her a perfect fit for our ‘Words for Wetlands’ programme. We look forward to seeing the poems inspired by her time here at the centre, particularly the one that will be specially written for WWT Llanelli's wetlands.”

For the latest Words for Wetlands events click here.

About Rae Howells

Rae Howells is a poet, journalist and lavender farmer from Swansea. Her debut collection, 'The Language of Bees', was shortlisted for Wales Book of the Year 2023. She has previously won the Rialto Nature & Place and Welsh poetry competitions and been published widely in poetry journals and anthologies. Rae's new collection, 'This Common Uncommon', is out with Parthian this month, and tells the story of West Cross Common - itself a richly biodiverse boggy heathland - which is under threat of development, and the campaign to save it. She also runs Gower Lavender, an eco-skincare company which uses her own locally-grown lavender.

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