February 15 to April 19, 2019
Sadly, I have to report that “American” John passed away in Arrowe Park Hospital on 13th April. He had been a stalwart member of the Friday Group for many years but retired nearly two years ago.
The “Ribbon” area of clearing has been completed, creating good sight lines from Windmill Ridge towards Liverpool. The bushes and trees cut down have been piled up to establish wildlife habitats for insects and birds and so play a part in Nature’s food chain. Near to this area, an ancient quarry has been cleared to form a wetland habitat and a frog was recently seen there. The path to Wilding Way at the edge of the “Ribbon” and the wood was becoming over-grown, so some cutting back was carried out to open it up.
Windmill Heath received much attention on 19th March when nearly 40 students from the Wirral Met. College visited Bidston Hill. Led by the Ranger, they cut down burnt bushes, unwanted Gorse and Birch saplings. A big Thank-you to them for their efforts.
At the end of March, there was the Bidston Hill Spring Clean. Five volunteers and the Ranger spent the Friday morning roaming over the Hill and picking up litter: about a dozen bags were filled and brought back to the Farm for collection.
April 6th saw the first Windmill Open Day of the year. It had been well advertised and the good weather brought over 100 visitors, including many children, to see the Mill. All the children could easily climb the ladders to the top floor but coming down presented a problem for some, but patient parents and persuasion eventually won.
Close to the Windmill, there are some large Rhododendron bushes and work has now started to cut them back. Nearer to the Farm there is an area used as a Forest School. The Group was requested to open-up the area by cutting back Brambles, bushes and Holly. This activity also required the replanting of several trees.
Three new people came to the Friday Group to see what it was like, Liz., Gary and Caren. They all seemed to enjoy the work and all have been invited to return.
During this period there were 11 work days, attended by 92 persons, who worked approximately 188 hours. These figures include the Wirral College students and Windmill Open Day attendances.