A TEAM of people are currently working to restore a treasured Towy Valley estate to its former glory.

In August 2023, two new trustees took over the management of the Golden Grove Estate, tasked with caring for the stunning gothic buildings and maintaining the beautiful views over the Towy valley as well as an arboretum.

Whilst full of promise, the new trustees have had a tough task with a number of setbacks including past mismanagement by previous trustees, damage from a leaked roof, deterioration of the building and park and also the full closure of the estate.

The estate was privately owned until 2011, when it was turned over to the public with a board of trustees. The estate was closed to the public in March 2023 because of increasing liabilities and it has taken some time for a new group of trustees to be found.

One of the new trustees is Bron Jones who said: “I’m really excited to be part of the trust and looking forward to helping redevelop the estate for the benefit of the wider community.”

Thanks to a donation, work has been done to repair the roof and now there will be steps to improve the park, including getting the correct liability insurances, recruiting volunteers and funding surveys as well as improving security and signage and reopening the park to the public.

Henk Smit, chair of the new trustees, said: “Our next actions are to secure the appropriate liability insurances for public access, recruit volunteers, fund an arboriculturist survey, reopen the park to the public (including the playground and toilets), improve site security and signage, and prevent further damage to the buildings this winter.

“There is a lot more work to be done in the months and years ahead, which is why we have started a crowdfunding campaign.

“Given the past history of Golden Grove, please be assured that we are committed to transparency and accountability in utilising your donations for maximum impact. We will keep you updated on the campaign’s progress, milestones achieved, and the impact of your support.”

The news has been welcomed by the community. Llandeilo mayor Christoph Fischer said: “We’re all so lucky that a group of new people have come forward to become trustees and turn things round.

“The new team are unpaid volunteers who are working really hard. They have inherited a bunch of problems but won’t be deterred. Thanks to the generosity of one wonderful donor and expertly carried out work under difficult conditions by Cled Moses and his team, emergency roof repair has been completed, which was the most important and urgent first step.”

Golden Grove resident Polly Verity said: “It’s so great to have new dependable trustees on the Golden Grove trust board who have the passion, skills and community spirit to breathe new life into this well-loved park.

“Gelli Aur park has given me so much over the years. I’m thrilled that the new trustees and volunteers are revitalising this beautiful place for the community.”

To view the crowdfunding page and donate, visit www.crowdfunder.co.uk/p/gelli-aur-golden-grove and for more information, visit www.goldengrove.org.uk.