As our followers may remember, a couple of years ago we joined with Birmingham and Black Country Wildlife Trust to undertake a project to survey the cemetery for Hedgehogs and increase suitable habitat, both in the cemetery and the surrounding gardens. We also organised the installation of a ‘Hedgehog information board’ on the main drive.
We are pleased to announce that we are hoping to work with a local Hedgehog rescue to continue our work to encourage Hedgehogs to visit the cemetery and the local green spaces at Jasmin Fields Nature Reserve and Brandwood Pool. Watch this space !
In the last week there have been several sightings of Hedgehogs locally. This one was snapped after crossing the main Drive in the cemetery. Our thanks again tour supporters who keep sending these lovely photos in.
We are always interested to know when Hedgehogs are spotted in the area as, with the Birmingham and Black Country Wildlife Trust, we undertook a project to improve habitat locally. Looks like it could be working!
Tree contractors, Idverde, have crown lifted many conifers (removed lower branches) and other species, as well as removing Ivy from the lower 6 feet of trunks along the Sunderton road boundary.
Regular visitors to the cemetery will have noticed a huge increase in tree work in the last year. This has followed a survey to determine the safety of many of the older and diseased trees, to prevent damage to graves, property and people in the future. Brandwood End was opened in 1899 and many of the trees were planted then or, in the case of some of the oaks, before that date. Oaks often live for several hundred years but many other species have a much shorter life expectancy and that is the case with many of our 1700 plus trees!
We have seen major crown lifting on both sides of our Wellingtonia avenue, large trees removed on the Broad Lane boundary, Poplars removed along the Sunderton Road boundary, Woodland reduced on the pool end of Sunderton road and various trees crown lifted or removed across the cemetery.
On the plus side, great care has been taken to consider wildlife with trees left untouched that are being used by Woodpeckers, ivy growth removed in some areas and left in others for nesting, standing tree stumps left to improve biodiversity and logs piled for Hedgehog use.
A tree replacement programme has been started and a number of new trees have already been planted by local pupils. The Friends hope that this can continue, provided funding can be found.
Thought some of you may be interested in this link to an album we are creating for the above event.
On Wednesday this week we unveiled our latest addition to Brandwood End Cemetery….a lovely Interpretation Board displaying lots of information about how to ‘Help Hedgehogs’. This is the final event in our Heritage Lottery sponsored ‘Help for Hedgehogs’ project.
Lots of people to thank today…. Councillor Tristran Chatfield, who unveiled the board for us , Bereavement Service Office and Ground Staff, all our local Councillors, The Wildlife Trust (Birmingham and Black Country), The Park Ranger Service, SHED, Woodthorpe Primary School, St Albans RC Primary, Rachel (our film maker), FBEC volunteers and finally the local community.
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.
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.
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.
Year 5 pupils at St Albans RC Primary were one of our many partners in the making of our Hedgehog film and completion of our Hedgehog Project. Today they viewed their efforts and we shared a few gifts to remind them of their work.
Well done St Albans and we look forward to working with you on our next project.
Last week members of the FBEC committee and Rachel Gillies (our Community Film Maker) joined parents , teachers and pupils at Woodthorpe Junior and Infants school for a showing of the ‘Help for Hedgehogs’ film. This film was made entirely by pupils of Woodthorpe Primary and St Albans RC Primary under Rachel’s direction.
Rachel reported lots of giggles and prods between pupils, lots of good comments from teachers and the Headteacher is very keen to share the film on Social Media and in the school newsletter once it is available.
Several members of FBEC have worked alongside Rachel on her visits to both schools and marveled at the enthusiasm and knowledge shown by all the pupils.
Have a look at Rachel’s own site, where she gives our project a great write up!! http://www.community-film-maker.org.uk/
Our thanks go to the Heritage Lottery for funding what has turned out to be a wonderful project. Just a couple of months left and St Albans get their chance to see their input!