Glebe Meadow Project
Granborough Parish Council has finalised a lease with the Oxford Diocese to manage the 1.5 acre meadow at the end of Church Lane, part of which comprises the playground; the intention, as described in the Granborough Neighbourhood Plan, is to create a ‘local green space’ for the benefit of villagers and wildlife. After 20+ years of being fallow, the meadow is overgrown and has been little used. The first volunteer work party started on a Sunday afternoon, removing surplus fruit tree suckers and cutting back invasive non-native bramble bushes. The rain didn’t stop the volunteers from a magnificent afternoons’ work; many thanks to Andrew Mellor and Robert Kemp for the fast and efficient use of their bush cutters, and to Hugh, Joey, Philip, Janis, Catherine and Oliver for their sterling service clearing the cuttings into large piles.
A follow-up session, took Place on 9th of January at 2 pm; Surplus brambles were cut back to expose flowering bushes and trees. We are planning that this will enable wildlife including butterflies to move back into the managed meadow this spring and summer. We will keep you up to date on progress and wildlife sightings over the year ahead.
1st May 2022 Update
On 23rd of April Bruce Clark and his excavator driver, Lee, sculpted two ponds in the Glebe Meadow; the upper pond, the larger of the two, is sited close to where we believe there is a spring and Bruce has constructed a land drain to the lower pond just below the Playground. Lee pounded the blue clay with the digger and we hope the lower pond will retain water captured on the slope through the land drain, but the upper pond may not retain as much water as there is a considerable amount of porous topsoil in that area of the meadow. Rainfall and time will tell.
The following weekend, Bruce Clark, using his stone burier, successfully raked and uprooted the central section of the meadow formerly rampant with brambles and which volunteers cleared in the winter. In addition, Bruce has prepared areas for wildflower sowing at the entrance, along the Denham View boundary and adjoining the Playground fence.
Thanks to the generous and highly professional work by Bruce Clark and Lee, the Glebe Meadow has been transformed and is fast taking shape as an exceptionally fine public space for the village.
Wildflower seed has been sown over most of the prepared areas; the seed mix is EM3, a general-purpose meadow mixture prepared by Emorsgate; how effective the wildflowers will be, is problematic, particularly in view of lack of rain and also that much of the topsoil is very fertile dating back to allotment days. Once again time will tell.
The next stage is to repair the fence at the entrance and to install three benches, two close to the path overlooking the upper pond and one above the lower pond below the Playground. They will all have wonderful views.
In due course, a noticeboard will be set up at the entrance with health and safety notices and information on the wildlife in the Meadow. We will be surveying the wildlife throughout the summer and we would welcome volunteers to help in this project; if you are interested please contact Hugh Ellerton at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 07865947908.
Work so far.....
Cllr Hugh Ellerton persuaded the Butterfly Conservation group to carry out an audit on the butterflies in the village which found at least 25 different species of butterfly, including two endangered hairstreaks on the eastern edge of the village.
Granborough Butterfly Study