Tree planting event, 10.30am Tuesday 15th January- Turn left off the main drive and head downhill….
Birmingham Trees for Life and pupils of St Albans RC Primary school will be joining the Friends as we make a start on replacing the 64 trees that were recently felled adjacent to Sunderton Road and Broad Lane.
Some time back, the Tree Officer had concerns for the 64 large Poplar trees that flanked the cemetery and towered over the newly built houses in Sunderton Road. His concerns were correct as when, in a large project, they were felled and showed that most of them were internally rotten and in danger of falling in high winds etc.
We were all in agreement that these trees needed to be replaced to maintain the tree stock in this beautiful Cemetery but we also agreed that more suitable trees should be found that would not shade out the properties that lie behind them but could also aid the reduction of ‘water run off’ that occurs in this area. How could we fund this project?
To the rescue came Birmingham Trees for Life. (A charity that are part of Birmingham Civic Society). They are funding the first 15 standard trees as part of what we hope will be an ongoing project.
Come along and help. Everyone welcome.
All the wind that has been blowing over the last few days will have whipped flower papers away from graves and flung them around the Cemetery ! Join us at 10am this Sunday the 2nd December by the Lodge for our final clear up of 2018. Bare shrubbery discloses litter hidden most of the year so December always yields a good haul.
We have the litter pickers and the bags, but we advise boots and gloves as the ground is uneven.
It was lovely to meet some of the members of the Blossomfield U3A (Natural History, I think?) group in the Cemetery this morning. Such a shame that the sun only began to shine as we were leaving! Our thanks to their Organiser, Barbara, for giving the Friends a chance to explain some of the history of this magnificent green open space- its buildings, its trees and its connection with the people of Birmingham.
We every much hope that they will return and also spread the word to others who may have family buried here, or who just enjoy the peace and tranquillity that Brandwood End imparts to everyone who visits.
The second half of our beautiful avenue of Redwoods is getting a little TLC with its lower branches being removed or trimmed. Long overdue but very welcome.
Five of the Friends today enjoyed the sunshine whilst collecting seven….and a half bags of litter from within the cemetery. Most of it came from 2 spots on the boundary and generally we found that there was very little litter and what there was consisted mainly of flower paper and various items that had been blown off graves. Our thanks again to the same few who turn up time and time again to help keep the cemetery looking tidy.
Can we ask you again, that if you place silk flowers on a grave can you please make sure they are well secured- and can you remove paper from fresh flowers, as when they die the paper just blows about in the wind.
As summer potentially draws to a close, why not join the Friends for possibly their last Litter Pick in the sunshine!
Saturday 1st September 10- 11.30am. Meet at the Lodge.
Litter Pickers and bags provided, but we do advise stout shoes/boots and gloves. Under 16’s must be accompanied by an adult.
Nesting is now over for this year- so we have been able to restore/cut the hedges in the Civilian Garden of Remembrance back to their neat and tidy state.
Our thanks to the staff from Idverde who have undertaken this task on our behalf. As the hedge is now mature cutting and shaping it represents a major piece of work. It is now beyond the Friends so we rely on assistance to keep everything ship shape.
The Friends still cut and maintain the hedge in the adjacent small War Graves area.
Just a note to remind everyone that the Hawthorn hedge surrounding the Civilian Garden of Remembrance always looks a little unkempt at this time of year, as under the ‘Protection of Wildlife Regulations’ we are not allowed to cut this mature hedge whilst there are nesting birds. It will be cut back as soon as is allowed.
Those of you that were involved in the planting, along with pupils from St Albans Catholic Primary School, will remember that this was part of a Heritage Lottery Environmental Project to increase wildlife habitat as well as hedging this area. The hedge has been a victim of its own success as it has become really well established and supports lots of wildlife…..BUT it will be cut well back, as soon as is possible !
Those of you that visit the cemetery may have noticed that recently some of the driveways were hard to travel along in a vehicle, as low branches had become a hazard.
This was especially true along the avenue of Redwoods, where the trees were crowding each other out and there was reduced light. The Tree Officer has instigated a programme of removal of the lower branches (Crown lifting) throughout the cemetery and the photograph above shows what a remarkable difference can be made by more space and more light. One side of the avenue has been completed and hopefully the other side will follow soon.
NOTE- You may see a Tree Survey Officer in the Cemetery as BCC are completing their five yearly safety check of trees.