QUEEN'S Park is to be designated a 'pollinator park' in a bid to further tackle climate change and boost Glasgow's green credentials.

It will be the second pollinator park in the city - after Hogganfield Park - to benefit from extra resources to make the green space perfect for diverse insects, birds and small mammals,

Council bosses are looking at "extensive" bulb planting for the park, the creation of wildflower meadows, extra tree planting and even increases food growing.

Councillor Anna Richardson, City Convener for Sustainability and Carbon Reduction, said: “Glasgow’s declaration on a climate and ecological emergency makes it essential we do everything we can to support the city’s biodiversity.

“As part of the effort to foster our flora and fauna we have been enabling increasing amounts of the city’s open space to naturalise and grow freely.

“In Queen’s Park our staff have since identified that naturalisation is having a very positive impact with an observable increase in the number of insects, small mammals and birds coming into the habitat.

“This growth in biodiversity is something that we want to extend and designating Queen’s Park as a pollinator park will give us the chance to do that.

“We are now also looking at extensive bulb planting, creating wildflower meadows, tree planting and possibly an expansion of food growing as a way to make Queen’s Park as strong an environment as possible for the city’s pollinators, while also offering a more interesting landscape for visitors to the park to enjoy.

“We’ve been working closely with local groups on how best to build a pollinator park and we hope the work in Queen’s Park becomes a template for other parks in the city.”

During lockdown, when Land and Environmental Services workers were on decreased duties, the park was allowed to grow without the usual interventions to cultivate the space.

This gave trees and plants the chance to flourish and showed benefits to the biodiversity of the park.

A briefing paper on the plans reads: "The vision for our Pollinator Parks is one dedicated to the conservation and development of pollinator habitat for current and future generations.

"Projects and interventions within the park will promote awareness and understanding of the role of pollinators in achieving local and global environmental sustainability and showcase pollinator projects that are a model for citizens and communities in Glasgow and beyond."

Queen's Park is 148 acres and was designed by Sir Joseph Paxton. It now has play areas, outdoor gym equipment, a bandstand, a glasshouse and sports courts and is an extremely well used park, with use increasing during the pandemic.

The report adds: "By re-imagining and creating a focal point for parks such as Queen's we can encourage residents to spend more time in the outdoors.

"The opportunity to provide people with a place to walk, cycle, play or simply sit and enjoy the experience of nature buzzing around them in the heart of the city cannot be underestimated.

"Parks such as Queens Park with its dynamic landscape opens up the opportunities to become one expansive classroom for lessons focused around the curriculum for excellence.

"A more biodiverse layout will facilitate learning about climate and environment."

The park is described as having "unique topography" as a "special place" with a variety of landscapes and habitats with woodland at the west side of the park and at its boundary with Pollokshaws Road and Langside Avenue.

This area is said to be "alive with wildlife" but the south and east of the park have opportunities for significant changes to enhance the environment.

The Ecological Emergency Working Group recommends a five year action plan for wildflower creation is developed and that other large landowners in Glasgow are encouraged to create similar habitats.

Council staff are now looking at areas in the park where enhanced planting, such as a mass planting of daffodils, and reduced grass cutting would make the most difference and the local community will be consulted on the changes.

Plans include 30,000 square meters of wildflower meadows to be created in the next three to five years; a three year bulb planting programme starting in autumn 2021; and 1.2 hectares of tree planting.

Local councillor Soryia Siddique said: "There are considerations for enhancing the biodiversity of Queen's Park and it appears an intention to designate the area as a Pollinator Park.

"It is important that there are details on the short and long term strategy, maintenance, wider engagement with the local community, stake holders and clarity on the aims and timelines.

"Biodiversity and climate challenge are local, national and international priorities.

"Steps to improve our local environment, mitigate climate challenge and reverse biodiversity decline should be given full priority and consideration."