Category: Environment

‘Cut back’ for War Grave hedge.

We have well over 200 Commonwealth War Graves scattered around Brandwood End but for some reason there are a small group of them together just near our Civilian Garden of Remembrance, so some years ago we planted a hedge as a form of demarcation. During Lock down it had become rather wild and unkempt….maybe like some of us! Today some of us took it in hand!

This is what we found……

 

 

But with a snip here and there it now looks a little neater.

 

Just one, or are there more?

In the last month there have been close to a dozen sightings of Roe Deer in and around the Cemetery. It seems that usually it is a female Roe and she favours early afternoon for her appearances!

This is not a photograph of the Roe in the cemetery, but a generic one. (Note that they have a ‘white’ flash on their rear end). Can you snap our lady on her walk about, either in or around Brandwood Cemetery. Is she alone, or does she have a mate?

Please let us know if you are lucky enough to have a sighting on friendsofbec@gmail.com

Not to be out done our smaller Munjac deer are still making an appearance now and then, but are exceptionally quiet this year and no one has recorded hearing their usual ‘bark’. They are often vocal at dawn and dusk. They are much smaller (Labrador dog size max) with shorter necks and legs.

Cancelled Litter Pick

The Friends of Brandwood End Cemetery should have been holding their quarterly litter pick this Sunday coming but, under the present circumstances, we have decided to cancel it. It is probable that it would involve a group of more than 6 people, most of whom would fall into vulnerable categories! We hope to be able to ask for your support for our next litter pick on Saturday 5th September.

Members of the committee will be visiting the cemetery as and when possible and litter picking but fortunately, due to lockdown and reduced visitors, there is very little litter.

If you are visiting a grave can we ask you to remove any flower paper from flowers you may be leaving and take it with you. As the flowers dry in the sun they become light weight and the wind carries the paper around the cemetery.

If you are leaving artificial flowers please ensure they are well secured, as in high winds these blow around the area and then get cut by the ride on movers into confetti !

Finally, can we ask you not to leave any unattended lighted candles, even in jars, whilst everywhere is tinder dry.

The Friends thank you for helping them keep Brandwood End a welcoming and safe place for all.

Wildlife making themselves known !

Munjac Deer have been making themselves known in and around the area of the cemetery and the pool. They were heard more than seen a lot in the past, but sightings have been rare of late. The deer you can see in the picture below is a Roe deer and is considerably larger with a longer neck and a distinctive white rump- but several years ago one of these was spotted and photographed in the cemetery by Dean our Ranger. How it got there, we have no idea but it is unlikely we will see one again! (The female does not have the antlers that appear here)

The Muntjac is much smaller, similar size to a Labrador dog, and can be recognised in the cemetery at night by it’s distinctive single ‘bark’. In the last week there have been close encounters during daylight with one by Brandwood Pool and also in the cemetery. Wildlife is enjoying lockdown, with reduced footfall making them more inclined to be about in daylight hours in this relatively urban area. Lets hope someone can get a photo of one ……but they are very quick!

 

Grass cutting season starts in Brandwood End

Great to see the main drive has been cut and most areas now on schedule. The Cemetery is looking good !

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our thanks again to the BCC grass cutting crews and also to Tony and his ground staff for trying their best, under financial constraints and the unusual conditions at this time, to keep Brandwood looking as if someone cares!

 

Trail bikes damage Jasmin Fields Nature Reserve

It is only a week or two since we mentioned our neighbouring site at Jasmin Fields. On a recent visit we were met with a number of trail bikes indiscriminately tearing up the grass.

This nature reserve is rich in wild life and now one of the main paths through the woodland has been turned into a quagmire and the area adjacent to the canal , crisscrossed by bike tracks.

The bikes appear to have travelled along the tow path from the Yardley Wood area. Lets hope they don’t become frequent visitors as they damage they do is extensive.

 

Yet another tree hit by high winds!

I am afraid we have lost several other trees in the recent high winds. One came down very close to the Lodge, luckily it appears it didn’t cause any damage.

both trees were quite large but have now been cut into manageable pieces. It is hard to tell if any grave stones have been damaged by the tree shown but we will certainly have to re-site our section marker!

It is a sad fact that many of the trees in the cemetery are  over 120 years old, and so reaching the end of their lives (Not all trees live as long as Oaks). They are regularly tested for the strength of their trunks but in both these cases it was the sodden earth that failed to hold on to the weight of the tree above- an issue that can’t be tested for!