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Good neighbours become good caretakers! Residents band together to care for much-loved nature reserve

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A GROUP of neighbours are to look after the Primrose Nature Area to carry on the work started by two local men.

The much-loved and award-winning nature area, located by Primrose Drive, was originally the idea of Stephen Rolfe and Richard Gilham, who also maintained and looked after the area. However, following Richard’s death this year, and Stephen’s relocation away from the area, residents have decided to band  together to continue their work.

Speaking on behalf of the new committee, Becky Hatfield said, “When Stephen and Richard first had the idea, the nature area at that time was just long grass, trees and overrun. Over the years with a lot of work from Stephen and guidance from Richard the nature area was transformed, becoming a haven for wildlife.

“Unfortunately Richard passed away this year and Stephen has moved away from the area for a new chapter of his live. Residents decided that they didn’t want to let the area go back to the way it was, so a committee has been formed comprising of Vicki and Mark Peaston, Sid Hayden and myself. Residents have been volunteering their time to help – and a big thank you must go to Janet Francis, she has been like ‘Superwoman’ cutting the grass with just a garden mower!

“During the time that we have taken over we’ve planted a commemorative tree in remembrance of Richard – a plaque will go up in time once the tree has grown a little bit.  The tree is currently near the bird feeders, in view of the bench he used to sit on.

“Our plans for the area include a bulb planting day on Sunday 27th October starting at 10am. People can stay for the whole two hours or just help for the amount of time they can cope with. We intend to use this day as a meet and greet event and hope that most of the 226 current members of the Primrose Nature Area Facebook group and any new members will make an appearance. 

“We also plan to put up educational boards about flowers, birds, and wildlife you might see in the area.  Visitors can then use these to identify anything they may see.

“And we intend to plant more wildflowers, trees, put up more bird boxes, put down more stones for the pathways – if anyone is able to donate anything to help with this or just donate unused tools, we would be very grateful.”

To support their efforts, the group has set up a crowdfunding page to raise money to buy tools, equipment, seeds, and bulbs. To donate, visit: www.gofundme.com/f/primrose-nature-area-donations

For more information about the nature area and the group, visit their Facebook page: www.facebook.com/groups/primrosenaturearea/ 

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