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by Terry Smith

We had three sessions digging Spanish bluebells out from Sandy Dell and the small wood to the side of Widley Gardens this spring. There has been a significant reduction since we started the work with the intention of adding to the native bluebells we have already planted. In June we had a follow-up visit to Purbrook Gardens where we cut back sycamore and dug out brambles.

In July we cut back the willow that was hanging over the pavement in front of Penjar Pond and cleared brambles that were encroaching on the new path.

We were back at the pond in August to dig out sedges from the centre of the pond to maintain clearer areas and create some deeper pockets to give a variety of habitat for wildlife.

In September we started the annual grass cut around the trees we planted at Privett Road in 2012 to encourage wild flowers and we will continue that work in October. The ends gnawed off hazel nuts still on the tree suggests a visit from a dormouse. If we plant more hazel that may encourage further visits although the area is probably too small to support a permanent population. Dormouse numbers are estimated to have fallen by 52% since 1995, mainly due to loss of habitat. Domestic cats are also a threat and we saw a cat kill two small rodents during our September work party.

If you know of other areas that might benefit from attention from the Environment Group, please contact us at [email protected]

We welcome new volunteers, so if you would like to join us please come along. You do not need experience of nature conservation work and there is no obligation to attend every task. More information can be found on our website:

Work Programme

Sunday 19th November: Widley Gardens – hedge maintenance

Sunday 10th December: Privett Road – tree planting

Sunday 14th January: TBC

Sunday 11th February: TBC

Sunday 10th March: TBC

Sunday 14th April: Sandy Dell / Privett Road – remove Spanish bluebells

Sunday 12th May: Sandy Dell / Privett Road – remove Spanish bluebells

If you know of other areas that might benefit from some attention from the Environment Group, please use the Contact form on the website to let us know.

All work parties meet at 9.30am.

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Environment Group

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Environment Group on their dedicated website