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Torfaen County Borough

Common Redstart Phoenicurus phoenicurus ©Chris Thomas

Torfaen (Welsh: Tor-faen) is a county borough in Wales within the historic boundaries of Monmouthshire. It was originally formed in 1974 as a district of the county of Gwent and in 1996 it was reconstituted as a principal area. Torfaen (meaning 'break-stone') is an old name for the river – today called Afon Lwyd ("grey river") – which flows through the county borough. Torfaen is bordered by the county of Monmouthshire to the east, the city of Newport to the south, and the county boroughs of Caerphilly and Blaenau Gwent to, respectively, the south-west and north-west.

There are ten local nature reserves including: Cwmynyscoy Quarry, Churchwood and Springvale Ponds, Garn Lakes, Torfaen Llwyncelyn fields and several run by Gwent Wildlife Trust such as Henllys Bog SSSI.

County Recorder

Tom Chinnick

School House, Llandenny, Usk NP15 1DL


Useful Reading

Birds of Gwent

by Andrew Baker Helm 2007

ISBN: 0713676337

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Gwent Bird Report

…available from Jerry Lewis, Y Bwthyn Gwyn, Coldbrooke, Abergavenny NP7 9TD

Trip Reports


Trip Report Repository

CloudBirders was created by a group of Belgian world birding enthusiasts and went live on 21st of March 2013. They provide a large and growing database of birding trip reports, complemented with extensive search, voting and statistical features.


Gwent Ornithological Society


TJ Russell, The Pines, Highfield Road, Monmouth, Gwent NP5 3HP 01600 716266 - Home Page for the Gwent Ornithological Society (GOS) now up and running with news, the latest newsletter, meetings dates, links and more…

Gwent Wildlife Trust


Gwent covers the lower Wye and Usk river valleys and the Severn Estuary in South East Wales. In the last fifty years Gwent has lost two thirds of its ancient woodland and the lowlands surrounding the Severn Estuary are threatened by industrial development…

Torfaen Wildlife Interest Group

Torfaen Wildlife Interest Group (TWIG) is the Torfaen branch of Gwent Wildlife Trust. We are dedicated to promoting the conservation of nature in our local area. Torfaen has a rich diversity of wildlife, despite a long industrial history, but it is under constant threat. The needs of a large urban population and a burgeoning new industrial base create a great deal of pressure for increasing development and the loss of important habitats. Our wildlife needs to be surveyed, recorded, monitored and protected.


Henllys Local Nature Reserve


Satellite View

Local Nature Reserves Leaflet

PDF Brochure


Valley Naturalist


BLOG from Pontypool, Torfaen… A natural history journal that follows the activity of a naturalist in the south Wales valleys and beyond. Thrown in for good measure some personal commentary on the issues face by wildlife…