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Showing posts from December, 2017

Beverley Brook and the Thames Water Pipe Track

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The Beverley Brook rises near Nonsuch Park at Stoneleigh and forms the eastern boundary to the borough from Motspur Park through New Malden to Roehampton Vale. Along the Kingston boundary it forms part of a number of sites from Back Green (Sutton) Manor Park, Malden Golf Course, Coombe Wood and Wimbledon Common. (ref side-tabs Beverley Brook). Today we set off on the west or sunny side of the riparian vegetation, fringing the sports fields owned by Kingston council. 

 Here a wealth of galls were noted on oak: marble, ramshorn, cherry, currant and knopper galls which is a bowl shaped protrusion. This is caused by a tiny gall wasp, Andricus quercuscalicis. It produces ridged outgrowths on the acorns of our native pedunculate oak; forming in August, becoming woody and brown. A second generation then develops in the catkins of Turkey Oak.


 Along the banks of the brook - wherever the tree cover opens -  are found both male and hart's tongue ferns. In the woodland - particularly aroun…

The Tree Charter

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The Independent Panel Review on Forestry, published in 2011, suggested that there was a need for a tree charter that reflected the modern day role of trees in our lives, and safeguarded access to the trees for future generations.

On 6 November 2017, on the 800th anniversary of the 1217 Charter of the Forest, the new Charter for Trees, Woods and People was launched at Lincoln Castle – home to one of the two remaining copies of the 1217 Charter of the Forest. It now rests in the Lincolnshire Archives. The Charter has 10 broad threads or principles. They are:

Thriving habitats for diverse speciesPlanting for the futureCelebrating the cultural impact of treesA thriving forestry sector that delivers for the UKBetter protection for important trees or woodsUnderstanding and using the natural health benefits of treesAccess to trees for everyoneAddressing threats to woods and trees through good managementStrengthening landscapes with woods and trees My professional body the CIEEM (Chartered In…

Manor Park - one year on

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Last January I posted on Manor Park recreation ground, featuring the pond,
which was then - full. I thought it would be interesting to return to see the condition of the site, particularly as the local Friends group had convened a well-attended task, planting 2,000 bluebells see https://www.environmenttrust.co.uk/blog/planting-bluebells Usually, I visit whenever I need courage to go to my dentist, which is just opposite the main entrance.
The recreation ground is on old agricultural fields, according to tithe maps, and  has remnants of ancient hedgerows. Hence its designation as a Site of Local Importance for Nature Conservation.
Although the pond was dry - hopefully it will fill up before spawning time - the woodland copse was looking splendid. Not a scrap of litter to be seen and dead hedging - or wind-rows - had been created from the arisings of  coppicing; these had been placed along the path.
Unlike the ivy - dominated plantations, there is plenty of light getting to the woodlan…

The view from Tolworth

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With thanks to the Environment Trust using funding obtained from the Co-op, the broken down fence around Tolworth Court Farm Moated Manor (TCFMM) site was repaired yesterday, including a completely new section.

The poor state of the fence has meant that litter from the road could blow into sensitive areas, such as the pond, which is scheduled for a face lift in the new year. As well as  human ingress - gaps in the fence- have allowed deer egress,  sadly resulting in a recent vehicle collision.

Seclusion ensures that  shyer wildlife species are more likely to be  found at TCFMM than on the main Tolworth Court Farm Fields. Yesterday there were three crows mobbing a buzzard around the perimeter of the field as well as redwings and fieldfares along the old Kingston Road.
The large intact area of  hedgerows and  field system on the opposite side of the A240, lead to the main farm being a hotspot for brown hairstreak - only recorded in this borough, slightly further along the Bonesgate corr…