WORKING PARTY REPORT AND PHOTOS: 13TH JULY 2023
This week’s packed report is from FOGG working party member Phil Lee – and covers the day’s special visit, as well as looking to the future:
Despite the weather forecast, and with the morning starting brightly, eight enthusiastic volunteers turned up and set to work in the area around the lawn (which is looking nice and green, although a bit weedy). We were again very pleased to be joined by Thomas, who is a regular volunteer when here from his native Switzerland. Anyone passing by would no doubt have thought us to be a cheerful and hardworking bunch. We did, however, get hit by some heavy down-pours, and we all briefly took shelter as best we could, and emerged to carry on as soon as possible. Tasks included clearing banks of weeds and overgrowth that is stifling other plants, sweeping paths and steps, removing old membrane so that the raised bed can be planted, turning over the soil, and weeding.
And we had very special visitors this week. David and Pat and their partners. David and Pat played around the lawn area in their youth (it was a private garden owned by their grandfather, and they have been so kind in sharing their happy childhood memories with us, and donating towards our planting fund). We hope to replicate some of the garden features that David and Pat remember, as we re-plant and improve the gardens. And to add to this special morning, we were also visited by John McGregor, pioneer of this project, Jeremy Woodward, our invaluable FOGG co-ordinator, Nigel Hyman, SVA and historian who has worked closely with David, and Paul Fealey of EDDC.
There was much talk of how the infrastructure can be improved (a more friendly path from the mower gate down to the bridge being a project that we are looking forward to, as the only path, steep in places, is now quite dangerous due to tree roots, and ambulatory challenged walkers and those in chairs are excluded form half of Glen Goyle). Seats, signs, interpretation boards are all hoped for over the second twelve months of our involvement.
With a lovely photo taken earlier in the year by FOGG working party member John McGregor – of the magnificent magnolia just over the other side of the brook, but originally part of the Asherton House gardens , which today’s visitor David Bassett enjoyed as a boy: