A BID to restore the gardens of a 19th century country house in Llangollen is underway.

Birch trees and thousands of native wildflower bulbs are set to be planted in the grounds of Plas Newydd, the timber-framed property that is now a museum dedicated to previous owners the Ladies of Llangollen. Lady Eleanor Butler and Sarah Ponsonby, the aristocratic socialites, scandalised Victorian society due to their unconventional relationship.

The restoration is part of the five-year Our Picturesque Landscapes Project (OPL) which aims to carry out environmental projects in tourist hotspots. It is led by the Denbighshire Countryside Service and Clwydian Range & Dee Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

The Plas Newydd work also includes the reinstatement of 200-year-old revetment walls, steps and handrails similar to the original design.

An OPL spokesperson said the work has begun now that the main tourist season is over.

“When the Ladies of Llangollen lived in Plas Newydd they had an avenue of birch trees which has long since gone,” they said. “As part of the National Lottery Heritage Funded Our Picturesque Landscape project, a previously heavily shadowed entranceway has been opened up and planted with 24 birch trees comprising of six different birch varieties including the beautiful Betula Jacquemontii and Betula Albosinensis.”

Mike Fawcett a regular dog walker at Plas Newydd said: “It seems a small thing now as we head into winter but it will grow and establish and look wonderful when the trees are in leaf next spring with all the bulbs in flower too, I look forward to seeing it then and seeing the project progress.”

Get involved by calling 01824 706163 or email our.picturesque.landscape@denbighshire.gov.uk