All posts by Gabriel

2016.01.24 Grassland restoration at Juniper Hill

We spent today at the SSSI site of Juniper Hill near Stroud (Wick street), working for Natural England. The grassland is an important habitat for rare butterflies and is in the danger of becoming a forest, due to an army of ash saplings eager to grow and take over.

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To restore the grassland, which has started to be grazed again, we cut the ash saplings while a member of staff from Natural England treated the stumps (that’s what the man in the green suit is doing!). We left any hawthorn or black thorn alone because of their habitat value.

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We had a good bonfire going!

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Although the day was grey, it was dry and it was nice to spend it outdoors in this amazing scenery!

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The end of a good volunteering day!

 

PS: If you fancy following Natural England Cotswolds on twitter, there they are:  https://twitter.com/NECotswolds

2016.01.10 Bramble bash at Llanthony Secunda Priory

This task was mostly about clearing brambles in various areas of the site at Llanthony Secunda Priory in Gloucester. Thankfully the weather was dry for most of the day, which allowed us to get a lot done, to the trust’s delight. We also got not one but two bonfires going! Lighting them, especially the first one was a challenge because everything was damped and we didn’t have much dead wood to  burn.

Some of the bramble clearing was critical to allow some archaeological recording to take place.

 

Getting the second fire going!
Getting the second fire going!
A nice area now clear of brambles, allowing archeological work to be carried out.
A nice area now clear of brambles, allowing archeological work to be carried out.
Cleared area with the smoke of the second bonfire in the distance.
Cleared area with the smoke of the second bonfire in the distance.
Clearing more brambles, near the first bonfire.
Clearing more brambles, near the first bonfire.
Clearing brambles around the pond.
Clearing brambles around the pond.

 

2014.12.07 Thorn cutting on Haresfield Beacon

The National Trust wanted us to cut down some areas of hawthorn and bramble to open up the site and prevent the thorn taking over. 6 of us worked with Tim (the warden).

Continuing from where we left off 2 weeks ago:
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And tackling a new area:
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Although there is still much work for Tim to manage this site, much progress was done by the end of the day:
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We enjoyed a fantastic sunset!
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To keep the area clean and tidy, we burned what we cut. The bonfire got very hot by the end of the day!
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