Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Radio Interview - May 2012

Back in May 2012 our coordinators took part in a radio interview to publicise the churchyard project at St. Giles. I thought it was high time that I added some photographs from our churchyard from over the past year to the sound and made it available on YouTube.

So, here it is! Enjoy.

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Practical Session Report - November

Over the last couple of years our cuttings heap had multiplied to two heaps, so it was time for it to go. We have no use for compost at the churchyard because we don't want to improve the quality of the soil, as it could lead to lower species diversity with certain grasses and plants out competing many other species. Therefore, Ivan arranged for a local farmer to kindly lend us a trailer that we could fill up to be taken away.

There's a foreman on every job and this job was no exception - in this case it's an opportunistic Robin, who would flit back and forth awaiting a chance to get at any worms our removal of the compost heap revealed. I also noticed this spider's web constructed on one of our Yew trees, it looked rather special with the sun shining though.

As the morning progressed the trailer steadily filled up with fallen leaves and old grass cuttings. I think we tend to do this every two years as we have space enough for a couple of compost heaps. I also liked this tomb, brightened with a spattering of Yew berries. As with every churchyard, ours is a special place.

This session marks our last for the year. With the start of the blog and formally submitting our biological records, a lot has happened during our 15th year of conservation at the churchyard, including being mentioned in the Caring for God's Acre newsletter:
Our mention in the Caring for God's Acre June newsletter.
(Click to enlarge)

Here's an overview of some of our activity during the past year:
10 sessions
1 blog
43 blog posts
1 overnight anchorite
100 biological records consisting of 
plants, birds, invertebrates, fungi, and amphibians.
1 fantastic team of volunteers managing this churchyard for the benefit of wildlife.

So, while it may seem a tad early, we wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Hopefully see you next year at one of our sessions. The dates can be see to the right and on our 'About' page.

All the best, 

Friday, 1 November 2013

Parish Life - Annual Report

Another successful year has been completed, our 15th.  Ten work sessions have been carried out and the interest and enthusiasm continues.  It is amazing how much satisfaction can be gained from managing such a small part of the earths surface.  The amount of changes that take place with the seasons and what really goes on in the natural world, to the inquiring mind, provides infinite rewards.  Although we have people come and help on a casual basis, there is a nucleus of regular helpers.  It is due to the dedication and helpful willing nature of these people that the project still remains a success.  There is a lot of hard work involved in the management, so this help is greatly appreciated.  Even though we still receive our Bishops Award for continued good management and are supported by Wiltshire Wildlife Trust and other bodies, this is a remote slap on the back.  The hands on work is done by the volunteers who turn up in all winds and weather, so thank you one and all.

To raise the seemingly dour, it has been a brilliant summer.  For those who have taken the trouble to wander around the Churchyard at St. Giles there are many species to enjoy.  From the early beds of Snowdrops, Primroses and Cowslips to the meadowland butterflies.  It has been a year to savour.

We wish all our helpers and supporters and Peaceful Christmastime.  We look forward to seeing you in 2014.

Contributor: Ivan Randall, Co-ordinator.