Page last updated at 11:29 GMT, Friday, 27 March 2009

Wildlife park to prevent flooding

The new wetland nature park
The park is part of a project to regenerate the town

A major riverside nature park which will help prevent flooding in Rotherham is being officially opened.

The five-hectare Centenary Riverside park is part of a £2bn project to regenerate the town centre and bring the riverfront back into use.

During heavy rainfall, water from the River Don will overflow into a huge pond and the site will also provide a haven for wildlife.

The Wildlife Trust said it was a great asset for people in Rotherham.

The site has been created in a part of the riverside previously occupied by heavy industry.

Nigel Doar, Wildlife Trust chief executive, said: "Wetland is an increasingly rare habitat yet the role floodplain wetlands play in natural storage of water and flood alleviation is invaluable.

"This site will provide a haven for wildlife as well as giving local people somewhere new to relax and enjoy the sights and sounds of nature so close to the centre of Rotherham."

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