It can’t be often that Hall Road is the busiest place in West Bergholt. But at 03.40 on Sunday 7 May I would be fairly confident that this was the case, as seemingly floods of cars arrived for this year’s Dawn Chorus walk. That is certainly what it felt like!
And so 24 of us assembled in the pitch dark, with most of us wondering quite what they had let themselves in for, and me wondering why on earth I volunteered to get up at such an appalling time each year. Continue reading
On Saturday 22 April I led this year’s spring flower nature walk to Hillhouse wood. The forecast was for OK weather, so we hoped that a decent number of people would come along. As 2 pm approached, numbers swelled, and by the time it was time to start it was clear that Chris Stephenson’s publicity machine had been on overdrive. Forty seven people were present, which was the largest group I can remember. I was going to be doing a lot of shouting (no change there, some would say). Continue reading
On 16 October I ran the fourth (I think) Autumn Fruits nature walk around and through Hillhouse Wood, near West Bergholt. The fact that I am able to make this statement is a slight surprise, because the previous evening’s weather forecast had heavy rain bang on the time of the walk, and light rain for an hour either side. On which basis I had anticipated being on my own. Continue reading
This year Naturetale has again run its offer of a day out spotting wild flowers with our team for someone who has bought the app. This year’s winner was Monika Koch of Wild Adventures under Suffolk’s Skies and Stars of Suffolk. Most helpfully, the area around Monika’s base at Aldburgh, Suffolk has some great wild flower locations – and as Monika organises nature walks she knows exactly where these are.
And so it was that Richard and I headed over to Aldburgh (or, more accurately, Snape) on Saturday 6 August. Continue reading
May 30 was the deadline for entries to the Naturetale ‘have a day out with the team looking at flowers at a place convenient to you’ offer (we spent a lot of time crafting that snappy title). So I’m guessing that you’re all waiting with bated breath to find out who won it. If, indeed, anyone did. Continue reading
Over the last few years the Friends has developed a slick and effective ability to publicise our activities, particularly the guided walks. So it was another ‘first’ when the publicity for the Dawn Chorus walk, err, didn’t happen. In an organisation with the scale, complexity and dynamism of the Friends there is always the risk that inter-departmental communication may go awry. And so it appears that our Outreach and Publicity Division were not made aware of the date of this walk – according to its Global Vice President of Communications. Our Operations and Delivery Division had forgotten to tell them! Maybe we need a new ‘cloud based’ technology platform? One for the next committee meeting!
So, exhibiting impressive fleetness of foot and responsiveness (for an organisation of our size) we used our stand at the church, the previous afternoon, to tell passing visitors to the wood about the Dawn Chorus walk. And so nine people (plus a well behaved collie) turned up – not the largest group, but very pleasing in the circumstances and, actually, better for bird listening than larger groups. Continue reading
In early October I led the third of my Autumn Fruits walks in and around Hillhouse Wood, near West Bergholt. These walks focus on berries and nuts, but also cover whatever else we find along the way. Continue reading