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FoEP: Improving the Park for the benefit of the whole community

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April 2020 ....

SECOND MONTH OF LOCKDOWN!

Click pictures for larger view.

Because of the restrictions, the insect-friendly herbaceous border along the fence separating the Park from Eleonore House has suffered from neglect and now contains some very large weeds.  However, most of the garden plants are also growing strongly so we should be able to get the garden back into good shape once the restrictions are lifted. Fortunately, the set-aside meadow areas are meant to be neglected at this time of year and we are pleased that the mowers have avoided them. Hopefully, they will be full of wildflowers and interesting grasses later in the year.

Alan Wright, a founder member of the Friends of Eastfield Park, was sadly taken from us on the 8th April 2020, at the age of 83.  Alan was Chair of the FoEP from its inaugural meeting in 2007 until 2011.  However, he remained a member of the FoEP Manage-ment Committee until February this year when his declining health prevented him from continuing.  Alan played an active part in supporting community events and our many attempts to improve the Park.  While he was Chairman, he was particularly concerned with getting the main entrances to the Park improved, something that was achieved in 2011.  Alan was actively involved in local politics and served as Conservative Councillor for the Eastfield Division of Northamptonshire County Council from the May 2009 elections until the divisional boundaries were revised in May 2013 and the Eastfield Division ceased to exist.  Alan was much respected by residents of all political persuasions and his contributions to community life will continue to be appreciated for many years to come.

 

Eastfield Park is a great place to observe wildlife as you take your daily health walk. Here are a few pictures taken by FoEP Chair, Vic Smith, on his walks in the Park during the lockdown.

The planted meadow near Eleonore House should have had some additional planting this spring but we are pleased that at least some of the seed sown last autumn has produced healthy plants, including the Yellow Rattle shown above. This plant is semi-parasitic on grasses and should benefit the growth of other wildflowers in the meadow.

During April, the activities of the Friends of Eastfield Park have continued to be severely restricted by the Coronavirus (Covid-19) lock-down.  The April meeting of the FoEP Committee had to be cancelled and it has not been possible to do any voluntary work in the Park.  Nevertheless, the Park has continued to be mintained by professional contractors; the grass has been cut and the bins emptied.  The play areas are closed but residents have been able to use the Park for their permitted health walks.  A few people have not followed the government rules regarding what is and is not permitted in the Park but the majority have followed the recommendations about social distancing.

ALAN WRIGHT

(1937-2020)

Wildlife in the Park:

Flower Beds and Meadows:

Easter@Eastfield 2010 E@E 2010 Alan Supervising egg & sppon race in 2008 Opening new play area 2016

Alan helping out at [email protected] in 2010.

Alan judging posters in 2013

Alan helping to judge the anti-litter poster competition in 2013.

Alan helping out at the first [email protected] in 2008 and opening the new play area in 2016.

Yellow Rattle (Rhinanthus minor)

Known as ‘the meadow maker’ or ‘nature’s lawnmower’, it is the most important plant that needs to be established when creating a wild-flower meadow.

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Tesco 'Bags of Help':

The Friends of Eastfield Park have now received the grant of £1166, under the Tesco 'Bags of Help' scheme, that was mentioned in last month's news on this website.  We are now able to order a new metal bench which has to be the type approved by Northampton Borough Council. It will be some time before the bench is delivered (probably over eight weeks) and we don't know how long it will take to get it installed.  We also need to agree the exact location for the bench but we have already decided that it will be close to 'Cedar Walk', the pathway that runs from the Greenfield Avenue entrance to the Park to Apple Tree Walk (that continues the pathway through to the Kettering Road). The position will also have to be agreed with NBC.