Shepton Beauchamp Cowleaze Meadow Project
This project is a community effort to utilize a 1 hectare (approx) site near the centre of the village. The site has been leased by the owners, Wessex Water, to the Parish council for 25 years. The site currently contains a sewage pumping station, which pumps waste water, and surface water to the treatment works in South Petherton. It has been formerly used as a sewage treatment works, but this was decommissioned in 1986.
It is hoped to provide a woodland/shrubby area, orchard area, wild flower meadow, secure seating and pathways that will allow access to a majority of the site by wheelchair users, parents with children in buggies, and all other villagers. It is also intended that a portion of the site is used by the playgroup as an allotment to grow vegetables, and to set up a sensory garden. Cowleaze Meadow can be found on OS maps using ref ST40561708. It contains a public right of way, and is bordered by a stream. The surrounding land is used for grazing cattle, growing arable crops, commercial fruit/vegetable production, housing and productive gardens with mature fruit trees. Various surveys have shown no remarkable plant species. There is a colony of water voles in the stream, and badgers, rabbits, deer, foxes have all been seen in the area. An otter has recently been observed in an adjacent field.
Local volunteers, who come from all parts of the community, will carry out the body of the work, once the basic infrastructure has been provided. We have secured the money for the work to be completed by contractors from a Community Spaces Lottery funded grant. The local school will use the area for nature walks, and the play group will be doing some planting. Before work can commence we require further soil samples to be analysed to make sure the areas to be planted with edible crops is free from any contamination. The survey and soil samples have been completed, and we are waiting for the results.
In addition to grant applications, we have received money from the parish council, various donations from groups and individuals.
Mary H Clarke 22nd February 2010
Click here to see a larger version of the latest planned layout
Would you like to take part in our Wildlife Watch, we have prepared a few notes which will help you plus a form on which you can record your findings, click to download then print your own copies.
Wildlife Data Collection Form
For details of all the wonderful wildlife recorded to date see the Flora and Fauna page.
News - Views - Events
The working party will be doing digging and weeding– so we need your help. The contractors will be coming to put grass seed on the seating area sometime this month. They should be clearing stones etc left from path laying, but if this has not been done, it would help prevent damage to mowers if any loose stones were removed.
We have purchased some wild flower seeds to start our meadow planting next spring (these need to be planted in trays/cells or in weed free ground this autumn. If you are interested in doing this, can you please let me know at the committee meeting? This will take place in the pub on Tuesday 12th October at 7.30 pm.
We will have our AGM in November. Date to be arranged. As some committee members have left the area, we need more. If you feel you would like to be involved, please contact a committee member.
Now that spring is almost here, come along and join the group and get some healthy exercise in the fresh air. Wear wellies in case you need to clear the stream banks. Lots of other exciting jobs to do.
From 10am onwards. Everybody welcome
Tasks for this session include labelling orchard trees, updating plan, clearing areas for grass seeding, removing stones, weeding, splitting snowdrops etc.
Please come along with tools and join in.
For more info contact Debbie on 241756, Roger 242608, Mary 240363.
Sunday, 22nd August from 10am onwards. We intend to mark out the planting positions for 22 standard apple trees for the orchard, and start to prepare the ground by removing weeds etc. If this is not to your liking, there is always digging in the seating area.
Can anyone interested in growing wild flower seeds over the winter let me know, so we can organize those able to do so. For further information please ring Mary on 240 363, Roger on 241 608 or Debbie on 241 756