Our second post-covid weekender. Lovely to get out on a Saturday and see loads of different people using the path. We did an urgent cut back on the bit from the snowdrop bench to Potford Dam. It was really getting tight.
We had joggers, walkers and mountain-bikers up and down, so good to feel like we are adding value.
Nice to have a different kind of cookie on our break, great to chat and laugh about stuff. This is such a great thing for mental health. It was pretty hard going today just chopping back the nettles for two hours, but we got there.
Our wildflowers are looking good and seed collection has started for autumn, when we will create new glades and clearings.
We are really happy with how the greenway is shaping up and getting more and more colourful and diverse.
Well actually bat boxes and a robin nesting box that we needed to get up. What could possibly go wrong?!
After consulting with our wildlife expert, Mick, we felt that the landing-ladders on the boxes were a tadge too short. Luckily we had the tools to improvise and the old boxes to utilise.
Lots of fun getting the things up and really looking forward to them being used.
This clearing has so much going for it. Our bench, bat boxes, the historic bridge, loads of wildflowers coming up where we eased back scrub in the winter, the Cawston Bridleway connection. It is such a great place to be, and holds so many memories of past workdays. I think this was our first clearing some eleven years ago when we started this great adventure.
Here is us having our coffee break and chat.
Thanks to everyone today, we were all superheroes in the way we got around the challenges, and Andrew, for making the things in the first place.
And another superhero is Jade, who sent me these beautiful pics of our wildflowers.
Proper talent and I really hope Jade becomes a regular contributor to the blog.
Next one is our weekender. Saturday 24th. All welcome, sturdy footwear and good gloves. Bring your own snippers so we are not passing stuff back and forth. Meet at the snowdrop bench at 10am
Blokes – we don’t like talking about our feelings do we? Luckily, because we provide a safe and secure environment, I was able to talk, and talk, and talk. This is what we do. Try and turn to the funny side of life and raise a smile, but understand the gravity of where each of us might find one another.
It was great to chat and also to get from Berrybanks all the way to the start, which is kind of where the cycle path along the Western Relief Road forks, with the greenway to the left and the cycle path on the right.
We just snipped back brambles reaching into the path and a few tree branches that had become heavy.
Loads of happy and chatty people along the way who all seemed to enjoy our efforts.
We have found our first area where we will be clearing out all the scrub in September. Mick identified about 25 wildflowers and because the ground has been disturbed recently with the building of the underpass, there will be loads more waiting to break free.
Next week we are putting up bat boxes that our great friend, Andrew, has made for us. There is also a weekender somewhere in the month so all welcome and all you need is decent footwear, good gloves and bring your own snipping tools so we are not passing stuff back and forth.
Lovely to get a group together on a weekend workday. It has been a long time.
Two black bags of litter picked up and loads of bramble runners snipped back.
We started at the snowdrop bench and worked all the way down to Berrybanks. Just over half a mile. I thought it was more than that but not to worry. We have plenty of workdays to carry on.
Views from the gate bench and the quadrant. Quite green this year but the greenway is about to burst into colour.
Lovely views across the heath.
Really happy with how we are looking and got loads of plans to add colour to the nettles. Will update July workdays soon. Everybody welcome but you must bring cake. Joke! Normally me or Marcus brings cake but we forgot today.
Our good friend, Andrew, made us a replacement bench for our quadrant. The missing bench was kicked over and I reused it at the snowdrop clearing. This bench sits a little higher that the rest so that people who do not want to sit quite so squat, can do so.
Great place to meet, chat, socially distance, talk about your day, share a coffee, bring your own coffee and not physically connect. It is just a great place.
A look up and down. Pretty clean and there is going to be a real burst of colour anytime soon.
Lastly, our coffee break. Nice to break off and just chat and chill.
Next one is a weekender – come along and help out. It is all good fun.
For those who worried that we had chopped the path too wide – nature has fought back!! It is no longer wide.
Really good to see a lot of new wildflowers coming up in what was scrubby bramble or invasive ivy. There is going to be a huge burst of colour along this path anytime soon.
We slapped another coat of Ronseal on the benches and got rid of the vegetation growing underneath. What we are trying to do is make it so you kinda discover the benches as a bit of a surprise and are encouraged to sit and relax.
Lastly a coffee and cookie break next to our wildflowers. I really hope to get the wildflowers to be more and the nettles to be less.
We stained the rest of our benches this week, starting at what was the quadrant of four, more on this later.
Two coats of Ronseal’s finest. Muggins here forgot that the benches serve as a great surface to crack open the coffee, so we had to settle for the ground whilst waiting for the benches to dry!! Whilst I love freshly ground coffee, I think possibly not in this way!
It’s all about looking after the work we have done over previous years and getting the most out of it. Judging by the rain we have had since, it was a good move.
Our good friend, Andrew, has made us a replacement bench for the one that is missing at the set of four. We used it further down the path when it got kicked over. This means we will have our quadrant back and is a great meeting place for larger groups. We put this in next week and, I promise, no further bench blogs after that.
Views from the quadrant.
I am in the process of getting the bits sorted for a once a month weekend-workday, and also trying to get the recording of wildflowers and insects bit, up and running. Should be able to share next week.