Ewhurst LEAP tree survey

Many thanks to all those that took part in this tree survey on 2nd January 2021.

For the survey we had four groups of people (maintaining social distancing) making various tree measurements and photos in the village and Ewhurst Green, to add to Treezilla. This is a “citizen science project that is aiming to encourage members of the public, local authorities, business, local groups and other organisations to collaborate in mapping, measuring and monitoring trees across the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland”.

Treezilla measures the “eco-benefits” of the trees as they are added. On the day we could only measure a small fraction of the trees in the village but the numbers are still impressive. The measured trees give an annual saving of £3,840. Just imagine what benefits all the trees in parish are giving!

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Looking back – and forwards

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The time between Christmas and New Year is a time for thinking about the old year and looking towards the new.  In 2020 LEAP was necessarily very quiet, but despite this we did manage to do some footpath clearance, meadow making, litter picking (twice!) and scrub clearance around the pond.  We also have set up a new and better website, at the same location as the old one (EwhurstLeap.org.uk).

We are lucky to have some marvellous descriptions of rambles around the parish written by one of our volunteers, Richard Sellwood, all of which can be found on the new website.

The parish council has also been very generous, and with the money they gave us we have been getting equipment to help with our pond and footpath work.

The committee would like to say thank you to everybody involved.

As we are in Tier 4 we have to be careful for the first working party of the new year.  All voluntary work is allowed but we must keep 2 metres apart.  So on Saturday we would like you to help with a Tree Survey.

This is part of a citizen science project called “Treezilla”.  We will work in pairs, staying 2 meters apart, find trees and take some measurements.  Alice and I will provide every pair with a written description of the project, a map of Ewhurst and a simple form to fill in for each tree you find.  Note we will only be measuring solitary trees in public places, not in gardens or woods.

Please come with a tape measure to measure the girth of the trees, a pen and something to press on (like a clipboard if you have one) to fill in the forms.  A camera, e.g., a mobile phone camera, will also be useful.

It would be lovely to see all those of you that can make it.  Please meet in the Village Hall car park at 10am on 2nd January.  We will get together again at midday and you can pass back your surveys.  If you have taken any pictures, please reply to this email with the pictures when you get back home afterwards.

All the best,
Eddie

ps. During this horrible pandemic, please email us if there is anything we can help with, or even if you just want a chat.

LEAP working party

The lockdown has ended, but despite being in Tier 2 of national restrictions, we can hold a LEAP working party!

This Saturday we are going to do some work in the village pond – not as much perhaps as previous years because it might be too cold to actually enter the pond, and we must be more careful.  We have two new LEAP waders (welly boot sizes 9 and 11) if anyone wants to get in.  We do not have any cromes though; these are the funny forks with long handles for pulling weeds out of the pond.

We need to cut back the pond surrounds, taking the cuttings up to the compost bins by the cemetery.

We have to maintain social distancing, and not share tools.  Please bring your own shears, forks, scythes and wheelbarrows.  I will have the three quarantined LEAP shears you can borrow, but they cannot be shared.  The Covid-19 risk assessment has not changed from last time, and will be available if you want to see it.

We will meet at 10am on Saturday (5th December) in the Village Hall car park, and finish around midday.  We will have a break, but because we cannot provide the usual refreshments please bring your own!

If there are too many of us to easily stay at least 2m apart then I will have to limit numbers.  I think this is unlikely but might be necessary.  There is no need to wear masks because we are outside.  If you are feeling at all unwell then please do not come.

I am looking forward to seeing you there!

[Note: See Local restriction tiers: what you need to know – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) for Exemptions from gatherings limits in all tiers, which includes: “for work or providing voluntary or charitable services” ]

We’re back and making a meadow!

Dear All,

We have a few plans for LEAP this autumn, and I hope I can welcome you all back with a (socially distanced) working party this weekend!

Whether or not you are able to join us, Alice and her sisters have started a scheme to make us all think about our environment. Simply stop everything for a minute once a week: #11thHourForClimate – see tinyurl.com/y5tq8svh

Earlier this year we managed a litter pick and cemetery tidy, but now they seem ages ago. Some time before that I mentioned we had been allowed, encouraged even, to make a wildflower meadow behind the pond in the centre of the village. The coronavirus stopped us, but with guidance we can minimise the risk.

On Saturday (5th September) we will prepare the ground for a wildflower meadow by putting up a small fence delimiting the meadow, and creating patches for spreading wildflower seeds.

Please come and join us, we’ll meet at 10am in the car park opposite the village hall. We cannot share tools, so please bring a spade for digging up small patches of turf. These can then be turned over and spread with LEAP wildflower seeds. Unlike many wildflower seeds, these are specially for fertile soil, and will hopefully make a splash of colour next year.

To make the fence we will use willow pollarded from the tree by the pond. James will bring some hazel stakes and we can weave the willow between them.

Unfortunately we can’t provide drinks or snacks either but we will take a break. Please bring your own.

Over the summer the LEAP website has had an (enforced) remake. Please take a look – ewhurstleap.org.uk – and pass on any notices or items of interest to add to it. Richard’s wonderful parish rambles are all there too.

I hope to see you on Saturday. Please keep in touch if you can’t make it.

All the best,
Eddie

New LEAP website!

This is the new LEAP website. I am trying a completely new system and I am still making some changes, adding blogs and pictures but if you have anything you would like to share please pass it on to me, by email (mail@EwhurstLEAP.org.uk) or any other way. You can also send any comments to me by replying below.

A better new photo would be good! Views of or from the hills? The pond with wildflowers? If you have one you would like me to use, please send it in.

Quiet June for LEAP

It was a quiet month last month, with little traffic and virtually no aeroplanes.  It has been lovely for the wildlife, as exemplified in Richard’s articles on the LEAP blog (Coming soon).

I hope the quietness will continue, and that you are all well and able to enjoy it too.  The Ewhurst LEAP working party will be having a month off, maybe more, while the current pandemic is so prevalent.

I hope that we can resume soon, or find suitable work that we can do separately, in the coming months.  I am looking forward to seeing you again.

Litter Pick and Cemetery Tidying

I hope you are all well.  Despite the lock-down, at the beginning of this month a few of us from Ewhurst LEAP, and a larger number from Ellen’s Green, went litter picking for our weekend exercise.  We did not meet each other, but coordinated which roads were done.  Around Ewhurst these included the Shere, Peaslake, Holmbury and Ockley Roads, and the Ellen’s Green group did quite a few more.

Next month (in fact on Saturday 2nd May) Joanna has suggested that we clear up around the graves in the Civil Parish cemetery behind the Village Hall car park.  We should be able to do this and keep well apart.  Unfortunately you will have to bring your snacks and coffee with you.  It would also be better if you bring your own tools, and that we spread ourselves over the whole of Saturday.  If you want to borrow the (uncontaminated) LEAP tools I will be there with them at 10am.

If I don’t see you then, I wish you all safe and well for the rest of May.  Please don’t hesitate to contact me if there is anything LEAP can help with, either personally or for the Village as a whole.

Wildflowers in the verge

Wildflowers in the verge, Mapledrakes Road

Here is a link to a list of all the plants found in the verge outside Leabrook this spring and summer. The original seeds were donated by relatives, neighbours and Ewhurst LEAP. Unfortunately the summer is over and most of the plants have been cut down to let their seeds settle on the ground. Hopefully they will come up again in the spring!

Many thanks to Anne Barrett-Lennard and friends for the list.