Brandwood Bounty in the cemetery today!


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Sunshine all the way!

Today’s litter pick was attended by a small select crew ! There were just 5 of us but we still managed a haul of 13 bags of litter- mainly from under hedges on the periphery of the site. 99% of the litter consisted of flower papers, blown into the undergrowth.

Can we ask visitors again,  that if they are leaving flowers at a grave they do not visit frequently, can they please remove the flower paper and place it in one of the bins. We notice that many people jam it down between the grave stones but I am afraid the wind seeks it out. Or we have to pick it out !

The sun was shining today and the cemetery was quite busy with families tidying graves and washing headstones, before the winter.

Many areas of Pigeon feathers and show that the Birds of Prey that frequent the area have been busy.

Our next Litter Pick will be in the ‘Winter’ month of December so watch this site for details. Until then, we urge you to visit the Cemetery, if you do not already, and enjoy this beautiful green open space which offers an opportunity for exercise, relaxation and quiet contemplation. Remember there is our Civilian Garden of Remembrance at the Broad Lane end of the site, which is always a welcoming space with benches for seating.

Can we remind you that we will be holding our usual Service of Remembrance in Brandwood End, at the Cross of Sacrifice on the main drive, on Sunday the 12th November. Everyone is welcome and we start at 10.50 prompt to enable the Celebrant to say a few words before the 2 minutes silence. This is a very short event and should be completed by  11.30am.   We look forward to seeing as many of you there as possible. If you are not a member of the Friends, please consider joining us to show your support for the work we do in Brandwood End. You can access an application from this web site or contact us on 0121 605 4316 for a hard copy.

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Final September Litter Pick Reminder

Final reminder, our September Litter Pick will be taking place on this Saturday morning, the 2nd September. Please meet at the Lodge on the main drive at 10am and we will finish at 11.30am. This will be our final Litter pick before the onset of Winter!  Our next visit will be in December.

Please think about joining us for this event as the cemetery is such a beautiful environment and we want to help keep it that way. Combine your litter picking with wandering around its tree lined pathways and listen to the bird song. What a good use of a hopefully sunny morning!

Litter pickers and bags will be provided but we do advise stout footwear and gloves as well. Children under 16 are welcome but must be accompanied by a responsible adult.

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Extension to our Help for Hedgehogs project

FBEC are pleased to announce that Heritage Lottery, the grant providers for the above project, have agreed a 3 month extension to our time schedule and some additional expenditure.

We would like to thank all the people that provided items free of charge and gave their time for free. This has resulted in an under spend! Unusual in this day and age!

After discussion with Heritage Lottery  it has been agreed  that we can spend the remaining funding on an interpretation board, highlighting Hedgehog facts, to be placed in the cemetery. A time extension has been agreed to allow for design, manufacture and installation.


Our thanks again to all the organisations involved as we were dependent not only on their expertise, but also on their hours of dedication to this project.


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Forward notice for our September Litter Pick

Gosh where does the time go? It only seems like yesterday that Julia met everyone in the cemetery for our July Litter Pick! This is our first reminder for the next one…….

Saturday 2nd September.  10am at the Lodge on the main drive.

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Beautiful, and busy, day in Brandwood End.

Today I popped into the cemetery as ‘Idverde’, the contractors that mow , kindly agreed to take some ‘width’ off our Civilian Garden hedges. Nesting now over, so hard cut back undertaken with heavy duty equipment. The hedge was thriving so well and putting on so much growth that it was beginning to impede the grass cutting to the rear of the adjacent graves. All good now. Thank you to the Idverde staff.

The new round feature beds are now well established and it is such a peaceful place to pass a few minutes. Today was busy in Brandwood End as there was a funeral and a large number of cars.

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Heritage Hedge maturing well.

Those of you that follow the activities of FBEC will know that a few years ago we enlisted the help of local pupils to create yet another hedged area to surround a small section of War Graves that we felt needed to be defined. The majority of our 300+ War Graves are scattered throughout the cemetery.

The original project took place in early 2014 so barely 3 years later and the hedge is now well established.


Whilst we were in the cemetery with our shears we also removed stragglers from this hedge.

Both these hedges were planted in define areas but also to increase habitat for birds, insects and especially Hedgehogs within Brandwood End.

Three years on…… a well established hedge.

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Trim for our hedge!!

Despite agreeing that no serious hedge cutting would take place to our hedge surrounding the Civilian Garden of Remembrance (for ecological reasons), we had to give in- and do a slight top trim today as some of the uppermost shoots were stretching nearly a meter above the hedge itself!!


Before, with the stragglers standing proud!

Back under control below. We have made sure that the main body of the hedge remained undisturbed.

Julia, assisted by our youngest gardener…and an after view, looking much tidier.

Can we also report that our redesigned and replanted beds are now coming into their own and reflect a riot of colour and texture, whilst needing minimal attention. Mission accomplished !

Hedge uncut in this one …..           Beautiful  texture filled   beds


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Rachel, our Community Film Maker…..

Our thanks go to all those that helped with the Hedgehog Project, and there may still be a little more to come…but we must thank Rachel for her brilliant work with us and all the local pupils, resulting in our lovely Hedgehog Film. We really hope we can work with her again on our next project. Watch this space…….and visit Rachel’s site via this link to see what she says about working on our Hedgehog project.


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At Last- your chance to view and share our Hedgehog Film.

Today we shared our Hedgehog Project film with our last group of Film Makers so now we are able to share it with you. Please take a look and share with as many people as possible. This film was made by pupils of St Albans RC Primary and Woodthorpe Primary with the help of Community Film Maker   Rachel Gillies 

Our thanks to Emma from The Wildlife Trust and BCC Rangers Jan and Dean- and of course The Heritage Lottery, who funded this project.

Please share this with as many people as you can to help the plight of the Hedgehog.

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