A COUNTRYSIDE area south of Wallingford Bridge is set to become a wildlife haven.

Cultivation work on Riverside Meadows, managed by Earth Trust on behalf of South Oxfordshire District Council, began on Thursday.

Following funding from Higher Level Stewardship (HLS) it is hoped the field will provide food and habitat for insects, birds and mammals.

Natural England and English Heritage have been consulted to ensure they are happy that the work will benefit wildlife and will not damage any sensitive archaeology.

Lorretta Waters, neighbourhood wildlife warden, said: “Twenty one different wildflower species have been specifically chosen to suit the soil.

“The grass should return quickly and next summer yellow rattle and ox eye daisy should be abundant, with other wildflowers appearing the following year, so everyone will see a difference relatively quickly.”