Our team of volunteers has continued work throughout Autumn and Winter. In October wildflower seeds were spread on the far end of the site. The seeds were sourced from an SSSI and should bloom in the spring. The first year may be sparse but the plants should become more vigorous over time.
During the winter months the team continued with general maintenance and tidying. Hedging has been planted along the two boundaries with the adjoining field. These are all native species trees and shrubs.
In February 2023 the team has planted around 20 trees in the meadow. These are all native trees recommended by our wildlife advisors. The trees are about 1 metre tall because they establish and flourish better when planted small. The planting includes field maple, silver birch, hazel, crab apple, wild cherry, wild pear, wild plum, bird cherry and rowan. The meadow has been given for the community to enjoy but please respect the wildlife that is establishing. The area is not appropriate for dogs so please remember – NO DOGS. Children are very welcome but please ensure they are aware of the nature of the area. We welcome volunteers so let me know if you want to be added to the list so we can let you know about the work parties. email@example.com
When we planted the hedging the hope was that we would not need protection. However the nibblers have been at work and we are putting spirals on the hedging as a temporary measure.
The very latest development on 7th April is the digging of the pond in the central area. The concept is to access the current water level as indicated by the brook by digging a test hole and then excavating to form various habitats for the species we wish to attract. For much of the year it will be a damp area and planted to encourage diversity. The rainwater running off the main field will give some natural moisture to the selected area as it runs down to the brook. Many thanks to Chris the digger driver from the Whittern and to Arrow Plant for lending the mini-digger. The soil from the digging is forming an embankment around part of the pond which will provide seating.
Update Spring Summer White Lion Meadow
The Parish Council approved the plan below. The White Lion Meadow is being turned into an environmentally friendly, wildlife site with provision for :- Flora – native trees and plants with the provision of suitable conditions for natural regeneration. Fauna – habitats for wild creatures of all sizes. Safe corridors will be maintained for transit. People – Access is required for all people with wheelchair/buggy access and seating provided. The idea is to create a quiet area for reflection, in keeping with the protected essence of the site. Information about the project will be provided by the steering group to the PC and the residents as work progresses. The project is long-term and evolving. The full version of the plan is in the information table on this page.
At the time of the last update you could see a lovely green meadow. Now you can still see a lovely green meadow although much maintenance has been done. There were sheep grazing the grass until spring. The early summer involved leaving the land and watching what happened. Volunteers worked on the fringes and tidied up the stream and banks. July the grass was “topped” off, cut on a high setting then the cuttings removed. More volunteer work took place to prevent invasive species taking over. There is no aim to eradicate these plants in White Lion Meadow, just to create other micro-environments and keep these highly successful plants in check so that other wildflowers can establish.
Sixteen different species were observed and identified as well as several types of grasses. Please refer to the information table on this page showing the broad-leaved plant species found in White Lion Meadow during 2022.
Wildflower seeds sourced from an SSSI have been planted at the far end of the meadow. Native species trees and hedging will be planted in the winter. The timing is weather dependent but we hope to get more volunteers to help so look out for notices and signs
You will find a fuller diary of the progress on the meadow at the foot of this page.
Report on the 2nd Consultation
on 9th April 2022
Thanks to everyone who supported the White Lion Consultation on Saturday. There was general enthusiasm for the wildlife project and we gathered lots of comments and ideas. The coffee/tea and cakes were much appreciated – thanks to our volunteer caterers. A plan for the White Lion Meadow will be drafted from these consultations. The Parish Council (PC) will consider and hopefully approve the plan. After that the Steering Group, volunteers and supporters will implement the plan as a long-term project. Regular updates will be reported to the PC and on the webpage, parish newsletter etc.
First Report on White Lion Meadow Project
On the 3rd August 2015 planning permission was given for the construction of five houses on the pasture between the end of the bungalows at Burnt Orchard and the black and white house opposite the entrance to Burgoynes Marquee buildings. This field is called White Lion Meadow (after a pub of the same name.) One of the conditions of the planning consent was that a part of this land was to be gifted to Lyonshall parish council to hold as an open space for the benefit of the community. This was to take place on the sale of the houses. This latter occurred between 2018-2019. Then the Covid-19 pandemic struck and little could be done because of restrictions.
The Parish Council is in the process of transferring the land into its ownership on behalf of the community. A request for ideas was included in the December/January newsletter which generated both ideas and volunteers. There have been consultations with Herefordshire Wildlife Trust and Herefordshire Meadows with visits to other meadows. On their advice 6 sheep have been introduced and they have done a great job of eating the grass and general clearing work. Volunteers have been on site doing light clearing of pernicious overgrowth.
A steering group has been formed from volunteers who will manage works on the site. Further clearing is needed and we are awaiting the return of the soil analysis so we have starting data. This first year there is a lot of waiting to see what is already in the ground so don’t be disappointed if there seems to be nothing happening. There will be a further consultation where all Lyonshall residents will be invited to give their views over refreshments in the hall. Look out for details in the parish news insert in the Arrowvale magazine. Volunteers are always welcome to offer their services, contact Kate Lomax, firstname.lastname@example.org.