Belfast, United Kingdom
City population: 276895
Duration: 2014 – 2014
Implementation status: Completed
Scale: Micro-scale: District/neighbourhood level
Project area: 65099 m2
Type of area: Natural Heritage Area
Last updated: October 2021

Bog Meadows is the last surviving remnants of the river Blackstaff's floodplain, which originally extended over 1,000 acres (Ref 3). This is an urban oasis composed of a mosaic of wetland, meadows, ponds, woodland, shrubs, and stream (Ref 1). It situated at the heart of Belfast City and is the last large area of the Blackstaff floodplain that has not been developed. The area is an important site for both breeding and overwintering birds(Ref 3). The Bog Meadows Enhancement Project aimed to improve the access, grazing infrastructure, and overall appearance of the site. It was hoped that cattle grazing will encourage wildflowers to attract insects, birds etc. (Ref 2).


Nature-based solution

  • Parks and urban forests
  • Large urban parks or forests
  • Blue infrastructure
  • Lakes/ponds
  • Rivers/streams/canals/estuaries
  • Wetlands/bogs/fens/marshes
  • Other

Key challenges

  • Green space, habitats and biodiversity (SDG 15)
  • Habitat and biodiversity restoration
  • Green space creation and/or management
  • Regeneration, land-use and urban development
  • Regulation of built environment
  • Promotion of naturalistic urban landscape design
  • Social justice, cohesion and equity (SDG 10)
  • Social justice and equity
  • Social cohesion
  • Cultural heritage and cultural diversity
  • Preservation of natural heritage


Maintenance and management of urban nature, Ecological restoration of degraded ecosystems, Protection of natural ecosystems, Monitoring of habitats and/or biodiversity

Project objectives

The goals of the project include: 1. Rejuvenation of wetland with its improved public access; 2. Improvement in the grazing infrastructure; 3. The overall appearance of the site to be enhanced; 4. Increase the native species of flora and fauna (Ref 3).

Implementation activities

The Bog Meadows Enhancement Project improved the access, grazing infrastructure and overall appearance of the site. Cattle will return to traditionally graze the meadows, encouraging the growth of wildflowers which will attract a wide range of insects, birds and mammals. Other works include :- 1. Demolitions and alterations, Excavations and filling 2. New concrete and gravel paths 3. New non-slip decking to existing bridge 4. Grassing and planting 5. New signage and new water supply (ref 6)

Biodiversity conservation or restoration-focused activities

Biodiversity restoration:

  • Rehabilitate and restore damaged or destroyed ecosystems
  • Restore species (native, endangered, or unspecified)
  • Restore native species
  • Restore valued species

Main beneficiaries

  • Local government/Municipality
  • Non-government organisation/Civil Society
  • Citizens or community groups
  • Other


Management set-up

  • Co-governance with government and non-government actors

Type of initiating organisation

  • Private foundation/trust

Participatory approaches/ community involvement

  • Joint implementation (e.g. tree planting)
  • Citizen monitoring and review

Details on the roles of the organisations involved in the project

1. The Bog Meadows preservation has in large been due to the efforts of a local pressure group 'The Friends of Bog Meadow (Ref 5). 2. Ulster Wildlife is a local charity for native wildlife in Northern Ireland heading the project. (Ref 1) 3. The Alpha Programme is managed by Groundwork NI which has provided financial support (Ref 6)

Project implemented in response to ...

... an EU policy or strategy? Unknown
... a national policy or strategy? Unknown
... a local policy or strategy? Unknown


Total cost

€50,000 - €100,000

Source(s) of funding

  • Funds provided by non-governmental organization (NGO)

Type of funding

  • Donations

Non-financial contribution


Impacts and Monitoring

Environmental impacts

  • Green space and habitat
  • Promotion of naturalistic styles of landscape design for urban development
  • Increased number of protection areas
  • Increased green space area
  • Increased conservation or restoration of ecosystems
  • Reduced biodiversity loss
  • Increased number of species present
  • Increased protection of threatened species

Economic impacts

  • Unknown

Socio-cultural impacts

  • Social justice and cohesion
  • Improved social cohesion
  • Health and wellbeing
  • Improved physical health
  • Gain in activities for recreation and exercise

Type of reported impacts

Achieved impacts

Presence of formal monitoring system


Presence of indicators used in reporting

No evidence in public records

Presence of monitoring/ evaluation reports

No evidence in public records

Availability of a web-based monitoring tool

No evidence in public records