The photographs below, taken today, show how welcoming flowers can be to an area. The first shows the entrance to the now unused Lodge on the main drive. The second is a small area of the Civilian Garden of Remembrance.
We need to get in and do a bit of weeding….but generally it looks lovely and we must thank the BCC grounds maintenance team for the excellent job they have done in reducing the hedge height and keeping it in check for us.
The Friends grabbed the chance to tidy up the hedge surrounding a small Commonwealth War Graves area before the rain started again!
Before and after. All that is needed are a couple of hours to spare and a few willing hands!!
We have several hundred War Graves in Brandwood End and neither ourselves nor Bereavements Services staff can find an explanation as to why these 8 graves are not dispersed within the cemetery like the others. There have been many theories but all have proved incorrect. No one knows……unless you know different??
If you happen to visit the cemetery this week, you will spot the major change in the appearance of the area around the chapel buildings!
Following the recent re-roofing of one chapel, the Friends have been pressing for a general clearance of shrubbery etc. Was it our nagging that encouraged this clean up……….or the impending visit of the Cabinet Member for Homes and Neighbourhoods ????? Either way, it looks so much better!!
We all know that the 23rdApril is St George’s Day, but did we know that there is a St George’s Mushroom? What’s even more exciting is that they are growing in the cemetery!
St George’s mushrooms are so named as they are usually ready to pick from about St George’s Day, and it was with great joy that Carola, a member of our committee, stumbled across a specimen whilst refreshing our notice boards! The link below will tell you a little more about them and it appears that the ‘River Cottage’ Chef, is most partial to recipes including these edible mushrooms.
Remember never to pick and eat mushrooms/fungi unless you are accompanied by someone who knows which is which- as eating the wrong sort can be fatal!
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.