What started as just another mild grey (early spring?!?) wednesday, the 27th of March was transformed thanks to Friends of Berrylands Nature Reserve volunteers, soup-er powered by Cafe Rosa.
As usual the volunteer team all convened outside of Berrylands Scout Hut, and following a brief intro from the Friends group’s new Chair, Emma, we set to work.
The main focus of the day was to continue with the path enhancement, started at the previous volunteer session, by spreading woodchip over much of the main path through the nature reserve.
Regular local volunteer, and committee member, Derek, had suggested sponsoring each wheelbarrow load of woodchip spread, and a number of the other volunteers decided to join in with donating too.
We dutifully marked off each time one of the wheelbarrows had been refilled (although there might have been a few missed or double counted after lunch when we forgot to take the clipboard with us when we started again!).
By the end of the day the group had spread 70 loads of woodchip, and 8 loads of crushed recycled concrete (for the boggier bits), raising £25 towards the Friends group’s future activities and events (more biscuits for volunteers!)
Thanks to idVerde for arranging delivery of the woodchip. There is still a good sized pile left, so we will be be topping up some areas, as necessary, in the future.
To make best use of the tools and people power we had available once we had established a rhythm with our woodchip spreading we also formed a second group deep in the woodland making a start on one of the very large patches of invasive variegated yellow archangel.
Due to the way it grows, with long entwined root systems below the surface, if is a bit tricky to pull up properly.
The team’s methodical and determined effort meant they were able to fill 5 big bin bags, before we had to coax them out!
I think they might have quite happily stayed ensconsed all afternoon.
This will likely be one of the main tasks at future sessions.
About half way through the day, just as energy levels were starting to dwindle, we were very fortunate to have some delicious soups and bagguettes donated by Cafe Rosa.
We all downed tools and came together in the middle of the nature reserve to enjoy it. Thanks Cafe Rosa!
In addition to the refreshements, the frequent comments of gratitude and well wishes from those using the nature reserve throughout the day was also really heartening, and certainly helped keep enthusiasm levels of the group high.
Thanks to all of the volunteers who came along to help out, and doubly so for also bringing along much needed wheelbarrows and tools to help with the days tasks.
Hope to see you all again at the next one!