GH Wildlife group

The GHWG continues to maintain the wildlife areas on Mill and Marsh Meadows. Like many wildlife sites, the aim is to maintain a mosaic of habitats to avoid having a boring vegetation stand dominated by the more aggressive species. Hence, management largely consists of removing invasive aliens like Himalayan Balsam and knocking back things like nettles, bramble, reeds and pond sedges when they threaten to dominate. Nettles etc. are very good for wildlife but we don’t want them to crowd out other attractive things like the Fritillaries, Ragged Robin and Meadow Buttercup.

Thanks to the good numbers of people who turned out to help in the summer, this year we removed more Himalayan Balsam than we have ever done. We had to cancel our April and May work parties due to the corona virus restrictions but under the rule of 6 outdoors we resumed in the summer.

September 2020 saw the 25th anniversary of the Town Council giving the Henley Wildlife Group a licence agreement to manage parts of Mill Meadows for wildlife. We have also maintained a watching brief on the other wildlife areas such as the Valley Road chalk bank, Gillotts Field, the Greys Road embankment, Tilebarn Wood and the Holy Trinity churchyard.

We are very pleased that the Town Council has recruited Lex Volkes as the new Conservation Park Warden. He is proving very helpful with all our work.

Many thanks to all who turned out to help with our management tasks over the past year.

Love wildlife?

If you would like to help out our local wildlife – be it flora or fauna – get in touch at greenerhenley@gmail.com

We have conservation sessions on the Meadows on the first Wednesday of the month from 9.30 to 12.30 although occasionally we move them to the chalk bank or Gillotts Field. We meet in the River & Rowing Museum’s car park. For more information contact Sally Rankin, s.rankin@btinternet.com, 01491 578633 or 07941 207687.

Our sessions are open to everyone. They are a good opportunity to get some fresh air and exercise in pleasant open spaces, whilst doing something useful for the local community. We break for tea, coffee and cake mid- way through the session.