Walkers in Cosmeston will never be far from a clockwork sound system to accompany their countryside walks

Walkers taking a quiet stroll in Cosmeston Country Park will – from the end of this month – never be far  from one of the new wind-up clockwork-powered loudspeaker systems to be dotted around the park –  which will explain to them what they’re looking at.

New clockwork “Audio Nature Trail Units” are to be available at the end of this month at Penarth’s Cosmeston Lakes Country Park to  provide visitors with “detailed audio descriptions as they walk through the nature reserve”.

The units work like wind-up radios which generate their own electricity  and don’t need batteries to keep them going – just the occasional turn of the rotary handle on each unit.

The clockwork sound units will be mounted on posts at strategic points around Cosmeston Lake

The clockwork sound units will be mounted on posts at strategic points around Cosmeston Lake

The sound comes from a digital recording on a computer chip inside the machines .

The audio units will mounted on sturdy posts and set up at “key focus points around the main lake” . They will provide a descriptive audio commentary and appropriate sound-effects to  bring what the Vale of Glamorgan Council  calls “a new dimension to the visitor experience”.

It’s not yet been announced whether the descriptive audio will be in Welsh as well as English.

The cash for the scheme – £8,000 –  has come from the Welsh Government’s environmental 5p surcharge on purchases of Tesco plastic carrier bags – a move intended to encourage customers to re-use existing bags rather than pick up new ones when they shop at the supermarket.

It was Tesco customers themselves who voted, in-store, for the audio units – amongst range of options on offer within each region of the UK .

The weatherproof loudspeaker units will now be installed around  Cosmeston Lakes Country Park by the end of October.


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Penarth Daily News email address dmj@newsnet.uk . Penarth Daily News is an independent free on-line fair and balanced news service published by NewsNet Ltd covering the town of Penarth in the Vale of Glamorgan, Wales, UK. All our news items are based on the information we receive or discover at the time of publication and are published on the basis that they are accurate to the best of our knowledge and belief at that time. Comments posted on the site by commentators reflect their opinions and are not necessarily shared, endorsed or supported by Penarth Daily News.
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  1. Christopher David says:

    Just Tesco bags? Odd! Its reported that c 30% of original bag figures (Wales) are still being bought. Price should go to 20 pence or more. Some good coming out of the surcharge though- that’s an excellent start. Perhaps if supermarkets had to match the money raised we could benefit more. Less bags more money!

  2. Richard says:

    This is not ‘some good’ at all, this is terrible. Why on earth – in a place of nature and calm – do they put noise? LOUDSPEAKER UNITS??? What possible benefit are these aside from making a racket and being a silly affectation which will soon be vandalised? Soon, you will no longer be able to walk around the park with the sound of ducks in the water or birds overhead, natural, tranquil sounds, No, it will be train station announcement voice in Welsh, then English blaring away just making a din. Perhaps the ‘sound effects’ can include a big dipper more in line with the amusement park direction in which Cosmeston appears to be heading.

  3. Paul says:

    Excellent, bags I have a go at that!

  4. Andrew Worsley says:

    And I hope people are aware that the new speakers to be installed at various stages around the lake will also double as loudspeakers to inform customers who hire the rowing boats to be installed near the café area that their ‘time is up. So if anyone hears the sound of a speaker calling out “come in number 5” you will know the 30 minute are up . This service will most likely be only running through the summer months . The idea of hiring out paint guns to teams of players is still being considered but likely to be passed , so if your startled by a group of players jumping in and out of the bushes do not be alarmed , notices will posted at certain areas to warn visitors . Nice to know ideas are coming thick and fast to the Park instead of letting all that open space going to waste.

  5. Mgg says:

    Come in boat no 6 come in boat no 6 boss no 6 is still in dock boat no 9 are you in trouble…

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