A good turnout and 24 members providing proxy votes, meant that we were easily quorate for our meeting. All items on the agenda were passed unanimously.
As of January 2017, membership of the Friends will be through an annual subscription of £5 a year (or £20 for 5 years). A new committee was elected as follows:
Simon Olley, Chair (re-elected)
David Warren, Vice chair (newly-elected)
Chris Mason, Secretary (re-elected)
Cathy Meeus, Treasurer (re-elected)
David Charie (re-elected)
Michael Radford (re-elected)
Elizabeth Sutton-Klein (re-elected)
Emma Walmsley (newly-elected)
Illustrated talk by Professor Kate Jones
The meeting was followed by a fascinating talk by Professor Kate Jones who explained how almost inconceivably large amounts of data on animal behaviour and movements is being gathered and processed to help inform ecological decision making and to assist in the protection of declining species.
Much of the material Kate showed us was taken from projects conducted by her students at UCL. The work extends from very small locations to global migration routes, but among the revelations, we were delighted to discover that using a 'camera trap', Kate has found the presence of hedgehogs in her garden in Muswell Hill.
News of hedgehog presence has certainly got us excited and we hope to contribute to nationwide schemes this year to help improve habitats for them, especially by encouraging people to create small holes in their fences to allow hedgehogs to roam over wider areas.
You don't have to be a post-grad student to help in the kind of research Kate was describing, and you don't have to go any further than the Parkland Walk to start contributing to such schemes. Many findings are processed by information collected by the public (citizen scientists) using a myriad of free apps on mobile phones. Next time you're browsing the app store, see what you can find. There are apps for recording bats, ladybirds, dragonflies and more, and others that will record and identify birdsong. Most of these are free.
We're now talking with Kate about how we can use readily available and affordable technology on the Parkland Walk, and how we can then present findings and video on our website. Some of the methods might require us to need local wifi access. So if your house backs on to the Walk and you would like to be a part of this really exciting idea, please let us know.
Owner submits new Construction Management Plan to use the Parkland Walk as access for heavy lorries.
The owner of 3 Francis Place has submitted a new Construction Management Plan in support of his intention to develop a small former railway cottage nestling in Parkland Walk
Despite covenants in the deeds to the property that should make this plan unimplementable, the owner is going ahead and hopes to undo many legal restrictions by entering into a licence agreement with Haringey Council.
For more information on this and how you can object, please go to our 'Planning and development' page where you can view the Construction Management Plan, our objections, a copy of a letter of objection submitted by the former Conservation Officer for Haringey, David Bevan, and links to the Haringey Planning Portal where you can lodge an objection.
Article: Evening Standard
Article: Mail Online
Friends to receive £10,000 grant from Tesco's Bags of Help initiative to develop a nature Trail on the Walk
You can read more on the project on our Nature Trail page
View our Prospectus document as a pdf
We want to hear your ideas
Conservation and nature quiz
How good is your knowledge on nature and conservation? Answers at the bottom.
Q1 The best way to help wildflowers is to improve the soil with good compost. True or false?
Q2 The UK has lost how much of its wildflower meadows in the last 100 years? Is it a) 48%, b) 73% or c) 97%
Q3 How long can an earthworm live? Is it a) Up to 2 years, b) Up to 8 years or c) Up to 14 years
Q4 Haringey is rich with parks and woodlands, but part of the Parkland Walk is in the borough of Islington which is not so blessed. How much of Islington is private gardens? Is it a) 5%, b)15%, or c) 25%
Q5 One of the best things you can do for wildlife is? a) Make a pond, b) Make an 'insect hotel' or c) Hang bird feeders
Q6 The most common species of bat in the UK is about the size of a tennis ball? True or false?
Conservation and nature answers
Q1 False: Wildflower meadows thrive best on nutrient-poor soil. Often people dump their garden waste onto the nature reserve thinking it is helping. In fact the opposite is true as wildflowers will not establish. All garden rubbish is best disposed of through green waste collection.
Q2 The UK has lost 97% of its meadows. This change is reflected in the Parkland Walk which was formerly almost entirely meadow. Meadow and low scrub provides rich and varied habitats for flora and fauna hence our projects to create more glades and open areas.
Q3 Q1 C, Earthworms can live up to 14 years and breed every 2 weeks. They are 1000 times stronger than humans (comparatively speaking). In the UK, the longest earthworms get to 30cm. In South Africa, it is a staggering 22 metres!
Q4 Q2 C again. It's 25%, making gardens a very important part of green space in Islington. All gardens play an important role in providing haven for nature's creatures - planting and gardening with wildlife in mind brings an extra dimension to your patch of nature.
Q5 A, A pond, or even a bucket of water sunk into the ground is one of the best things you can do for wildlife. Freshwater habitats hold more than 40% of the world's known species.
Q6 FALSE. The pipistrelle bat is about 4cms long, so it's nearer a ping pong ball and would fit in a matchbox.