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Posts Tagged ‘Chorlton Water Park’

It is with great sadness that we have learned of the death of John Agar on 17 April 2020.  John was a very committed and enthusiastic member of SACV and right up until recent weeks he was a stalwart of the group, for many years our most frequent volunteer.  John was out with us most recently at Chorlton Water Park on Sunday 1 March, where he busily got stuck in to the construction of a willow arch.

John had a passion for the natural world and conservation and he especially enjoyed having more time to indulge these interests in later life.  In former years, John was a fixture on our residential weekends in the Peaks, until he “retired” from weekends away in 2013.  On those weekends, John continued his working life’s habit of very early starts, so by the time the rest of us were up John would inevitably have been for a walk to listen to the local birdsong as well as got the breakfast porridge, tea and toast on the go!

John was a founder member of the Friends of Chorlton Meadows, a group we have worked with many times over the years.  Having lived in Chorlton all his life, John was a source of fascinating memories of the changing local environment.

Since the loss of John, tributes have come in from the volunteers who have worked with him over the years: it is clear he was held in huge affection and warm regard, a vocal advocate for the natural environment, infectiously enthusiastic and always willing to share his knowledge with others, warm and welcoming to volunteers of all ages, good-humoured and good company.  He will be greatly missed.

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Today we were back at Chorlton Water Park.  There was a good crowd of us so we were able to work on a couple of different things, but mainly some maintenance of the willow groynes at the edge of the lake which we have worked on several times over the years.  These groynes are important in preventing erosion of the lakeside and in providing a habitat for birds and for spawning fish.

We also cut encroaching saplings from among the reed beds and used some cut willow to strengthen and maintain the arch by the wildflower area.

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Today we were in action at Chorlton Water Park.  We were working first on some path resurfacing following water damage, then repairing two sets of steps.

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Steps at Chorlton Water Park

Many thanks to the small but dedicated band of volunteers who made it out today to help renovate a set of worn-out steps at Chorlton Water Park.  What an improvement!

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The wildlife area at Chorlton Water Park has been developed in conjunction with the RSPB over the last few years, mainly for educational purposes.  Today we helped with some maintenance: planting, mulching, laying new woodchip on the paths, and clearing debris from the dipping pond.  And there was plenty of spring wildlife to be observed while we were about it!

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Our first activity of 2017: some work on the willow groynes at Chorlton Water Park!  These groynes are important in protecting the banks from erosion and providing a valuable wildlife habitat.  There was only a small band of volunteers out today but a pleasant misty winter’s day and some good work done!

Update, March 2019: While back at Chorlton Water Park we’ve been able to see that the willow groyne is now looking well established!

Established willow groyne

Established willow groyne

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In what is becoming an annual activity, this past Sunday we were out in Chorlton Water Park helping with the maintenance of the woodland walk.  We got a good section of the path done, so thanks to those who turned out in what had  been looking to be a weekend of variable weather!

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Today we were back at Chorlton Water Park to continue work on the new wildlife garden being created here in conjunction with the RSPB.  We planted a few wildlife-friendly trees and shrubs and finished building a flowerbed mound where our plantings included flowers such as cowslip and ox-eye daisy.  We then helped finish the bog garden around the new pond – and added wetland plants such as marsh marigold, water avens, ragged robin and flowering rush.

It was good to see the willow arch (which we constructed in December) looking healthy and sprouting well, fulfilling its function as the entrance to this developing wildlife area!

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A day at Chorlton Water Park on Sunday 13th December marked the end of SACV’s activities for 2015.  We worked on maintaining the willow groynes at the edge of the lake, which provide an important habitat for birdlife and spawning fish; using the cut willow, we then created a willow arch which will provide a living entrance to the new wildlife garden being created in conjunction with the RSPB.  Then, to finish the day, we had our annual Christmas get-together with plenty of mulled wine and seasonal delights – all of that, plus a 40th birthday to celebrate!

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The Sunday before last (19th July 2015) a few SACV volunteers were out in Chorlton Water Park and planted wildflowers (such as cow-slips and self-heal) on the edge of a path surrounding Chorlton Water park (heavy work as the ground was hard!).  After a well-deserved lunch, the next task was to lay woodchip on a woodland path, finishing off the work started at our visit here in early June.  Finally there was some planting, including butterfly-friendly buddleia, in a bird-feeding area.  A productive day!

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