New Wildlife Area in Burghwallis

This January, work has begun on clearing the overgrown woodland adjoining The Burghwallis pub car park to create a new seating and play area for families.

Aims

  • To provide a safe, fenced seating and play area for families within a woodland setting.
  • To lay paths to “places of interest” with some access for disabled and wheelchair users.
  • To leave an untouched area as a wildlife zone near the residential side of the wood.
  • To replant and encourage natural bulb and wildflower species to grow throughout the year.
  • To invite and encourage community groups and children to participate in setting up wild habitats.

Progress so far

After checking the condition and placement of trees and man-made features, a plan was made to decide which areas would be developed and which would be left untouched. The main, middle overgrown areas were cleared using a mini-digger. The surface rubbish was removed along with some of the ivy, taking away just enough depth to let existing bulbs grow. A den has been built using natural materials, logs, and trunks and some recycled tyres have been placed in the areas nearest to the pub.

Dead trees have been taken down and areas for wild planting are being prepared. Some woodland plants and bulbs have already been kindly donated, but it not too late to give some more. The project team is headed by Sally at the Burghwallis Pub who would welcome donations of plants and suitable bulbs.

New paths have been marked out and some tables placed in different areas on a temporary basis until final decisions are made. The area is being taped off until permanent fencing can be erected.

Next Steps

  • To erect fencing with self-closing gates, to separate the woodland garden from the car park and to put up information signs, e.g. “No Dogs” and “Children must be supervised” etc.
  • Constantly checking the ground to ensure there are no hidden dangers before regrowth begins in the next couple of months.
  • Preparing the pathways with weed suppressant and then covering with bark and other materials suitable for wheelchair access.
  • Contacting free funding organisations, such as Grow Wild and the local community to acquire native seeds, bulbs and shrubs to plant in cleared areas and to establish new garden areas.
  • Contacting local schools to discuss projects.
  • Contacting local bird and wildlife enthusiasts for advice on bat box and owl box siting.
  • Establishing bird and squirrel feeding areas and collecting some interesting features such as wind chimes and solar lighting.
  • Information signs will be put up regarding trees, plant and wildlife species.

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