Narroways Millennium Green Trust Meetingsare held once a month in the St Werburghs area -The next meeting is at 8.00 p.m. on Monday 28th January 2002 at The Miners Arms on Mina Rd., St Werburghs. All are welcome.
HistoryOn the 9th February 2002 it will be the 5th anniversary of the demonstration on Narroways that helped to save the hill for the community and wildlife. An unprecedented 850 people turned up that day with banners and music and stopped any nonsense by British Rail who had been trying to auction off our open space.
We’re in the depths of winter; some days so gloomy that you cannot turn the lights off. Still, there have also been some of those sharp bright frosty days that are so attractive for us and so life-threatening for the garden birds which throw themselves on the mercy of the bird feeders.
Frosty Church Field
In November Des and Lincoln organised some small mammal trapping on Narroways so we could start to find out what lives on the hill. Baited traps are put down then checked a few hours later and any creatures caught are released unharmed. Well, there are definitely Woodmice – we caught 2 on the 10th and another 7 on the 11th November 2001. Coincidentally I also disturbed 2 woodmice sheltering under carpet on an allotment nearby. We will try again in the spring and see if we can find any voles or shrews. Des and Lincoln saw a large Red Fox in the hollow when putting down traps on the 9th November. I saw a Grey Squirrel by the Church Field and Boiling Wells in November.
There have been numerous sightings of the once elusive Jay around the trees and bushes this winter and another Green Woodpecker was seen in Simon’s Grove on the 8th December 2001. On one of the coldest days I saw 3 Redwings flocking with Blackbirds above the tunnel. A Sparrowhawk flew above the Severn Beach embankment on 2nd January and a female Blackcap was feeding in the Ivy on a garden wall by the Church Field. There was another Meadow Pipit on the grassy hill on the 4th November.
Site Improvements. Fencing by the Church Path has been done by English Landscapes. The 4 cast iron marker signs have been cast and will be put in position in February.They look really good and will hopefully be there for a long time.
I have been working on the Interpretation Boards with Landmark for the past couple of months and with the help of Steve and a group of environmental students at Edinburgh University I think we have now produced 3 very informative and attractive boards which will also go in place next month.
Naomi has been active in liasing over the artwork we will place on the hill. In the end we are working with Julian Warren who came up with a great looking design which will be a metal bench incorporating themes of the railway track and local wildlife. It may also incorporate names of people important locally.
We are getting help from British Trust for Conservation Volunteersto do some major bramble control in February/March. They will also be involved in plans to manage the Ash wood to make it even better for wildlife
Ashley Vale Action Group (AVAG)are getting close to being funded for exciting plans to control vehicle traffic locally using a ‘home zone’. The self-builders were kind enough to donate money for a Mulberry tree for the Community Orchard.
Narroways Hill is used occasionally by other groups but the trustees should be contacted (via St Werburghs City Farm or our email address) for any Organised Group Activities(beyond the usual dog walking, blackberrying, picnicing, sledging, didgeridoo playing sort of stuff) The main reason is to preserve the wild environment and protect the wildlife there.
The next Volunteer Work Day for Narroways will be at 10.30 on Saturday 19th January. It is always on the 3rd Saturday of each month and is a great way to get involved and do something practical. Meet at 21 St Werburghs Park.
The Narroways Website carries Records of Animal Speciesobserved in the area. Please contact us if you see anything interesting in or around Narroways. Please mention which date you saw this and any details you can give including just where you saw it.
Continued thanks to Sweet, Hemmings, The Millennium Commission and The Countryside Agency for funding for site improvements.