Meet at Garland Road entrance This free walk will take about 1.5 hours and finish at the car park off Plum Lane.
Kevin Godby of GCDA leads the walk, suitable for beginners or those who want to revisit his Autumn foraging trail of last year in a new season. You will learn to identify around 18 common forageable species, be shown where they grow and taste some of them too!
You may also bring along something to take home the things you come across, if you wish. A small teaspoon might be handy too…
Please wear suitable footwear and be aware we will be walking uphill. This walk is aimed at adults. If you have questions about the route re mobility please contact firstname.lastname@example.org so we can help. No dogs, please.
This is an all-weather walk!
Our Bird Walk was a success (despite grey skies) with an enthusiastic group of members plus some visiting RSPB spotters invited by Stuart. Between them all 23 different species were identified. The visitors were impressed by the habitats and birds Shrewsbury Park has to offer.
Nicky Wilson of RSPB Bexley wrote a wonderfully detailed and interesting report and graciously agreed to share it, so I’ll leave you to reading it yourself on this link. Thank you so much , Nicky!
Come join this FSP walk led by Stuart Banks, resident RSPB member, for an hour or two discovering what’s going on as the nesting season starts. The birdsong is growing every day!
The full route will be somewhat up and down but leisurely. Sturdy shoes and binoculars would be helpful. Email email@example.com and we may be able to help with accessibility. Bus 291 stops at the gate.
Free to members, £2 for non-members.
Sorry no dogs, please.
This is a RAIN or SHINE walk!
The intrepid Peter and Keith of Parks and Open Spaces tree gang managed to clear out the bird boxes along Dothill path mid February ready for new tenants. However housing is at a premium for the moment because three of the boxes had been seriously vandalised by parakeets and/or squirrels. Hard to tell.
These were taken down and will be replaced. Eight of the boxes had been inhabited, the same as last season. But not the same boxes…hmmm
Battling the increasing chilly wind they re-positioned the 6 bat boxes that had been refurbished. You’ll spot them roughly in the same area as before. Many thanks to Clive who re-roofed the bat boxes and Peter and Keith for their expertise and ladder!
The undergrowth is winning!
The Parks and Open Spaces department have once again given us 1000 crocus bulbs and 1000 native daffodil bulbs to enhance springtime in the Park. Kids are particularly good bulb planters…
We’ll meet at the bottom of the main path where it crosses the Green Chain Walk. Come along and help create some pockets of sunshine for the new year, adding to the ones we planted last year.
Bring a trowel or small shovel, and gloves. If the weather is anything but steady rain, we will have a go!
Finding food in the Park
Sunday 10 September saw the much-anticipated Foraging Walk take place at Shrewsbury Park. Around 35 local people attended the walk to learn which hedges, plants and trees to forage from, but also those to avoid. The park offers a huge array of plants which can be used as food in a raw state, cooked, or in the form of teas. Amongst others they sampled cherry plums, hops, sloes, ground elder, burdock, horseradish, yarrow and raspberries.
Kevin Godby, a local expert who works for Greenwich Co-operative Development Agency (GCDA) on their Growing Greenwich Project demonstrated how to find the seeds, berries and fruit and how to safely consume them. He shared home-made jam and produce that he had made from berries found in the park, pointing out where they grew as he went along the trail.
Kevin said: “It’s important to remember that foraging is about eating a little from a range of different fruit and not lots from one place, as the body needs variety and too much from one place can tip the balance the wrong way.”
Kris Inglis, Chair of FSP said “we have all learnt so much about what we can and can’t consume from the hedgerows. It is amazing to find so much in one space, which will change with every season. Until today we knew little of this intriguing aspect of the park.”
Michael Stuart, a keen forager from Kilburn also attended to offer his experience; his key advice is to observe an area to get to know it and see how it changes through the seasons which will lead to a deeper appreciation of the environment. He recommends winter and spring for the variety of fresh leaves available to add to salad.
By Sandra Bauer
- Cherry plums
- Hawthorn berries
- Ground elder
- Ash key
- Birch syrup – harvest in march
- Oregon grape
- Lime tree
To our amazement, nearly 100 people gathered for last Friday’s Bat Walk – and the bats did too! Everyone enjoyed the walk, and even the baby buggies survived the off-road experience.
REMINDER: If you would like to borrow a bat detector to use for a week, please go to Bats page under Flora and Fauna . Details at the bottom of the page.
An FSP member and dog walker has taken up the role of Hedgehog Guardian after discovering there is a growing population of ‘hogs’ inhabiting Shrewsbury Park. This is her initial idea that we hope to support and put in place – with your help.
Michelle says: “This hot and arid weather is a real problem for them. They can’t dig for food because the ground’s too hard, and of course, water is in scarce supply. One of the key things I was thinking about was putting ‘water stations’ (i.e.pet water bowls) in strategic locations in the park. If we can get people on board with helping to keep them regularly topped up with fresh water, then this would be fantastic. I’m happy to do this when I go out with my dogs of a morning, but if we can maybe get some ‘hedgehog champions’ on board, then that’d be great.”
Those of you who came on the May Bat Walk will know firsthand that hedgehogs are about in the night – we met one who simply froze when spotted in torchlights until we crept back to the path and let it get on with foraging for dinner.
Keep your eyes open and report any sightings. There will be a Hedgehog Stall at the Summer Festival to learn more about their habits and how to get involved in their welfare.