Ian Semmons, from Blackthorn Drive, writes –
Walk on the Wet Side – “Looking out the office window – a patchwork of grass and melting unfolds across the water meadow. Soggy patches abound under a dull grey sky. So why bother to come out of a cosy warm house? Well, where to start? You get the energetic ones – the runners out in all weathers pounding a lonely but determined path in a multitude of fancy coloured outfits. Then at the other end of the scale, you see the youngsters wrapped up against the cold having a whale of a time on the play equipment or enjoying a snowball fight. Then come the dog walkers – an ever-increasing band bringing a wide variety of breeds and dog coats. Finally, the walkers-some going at a frantic pace, others just roaming around enjoying the raw beauty the winter brings to the water meadow. In short something for everyone and of course, do not forget the fun of “pooh sticks” by the bridges – you are never too old to join in!
Yet it does not stop there – how about the residents of the water meadows? Birds abound, squirrels race around teasing the dogs to catch them, you might even see a water vole or two and don’t forget the rabbits. Our underground friends leave their trademark piles on the grass yet remain rarely seen. In warmer weather, small fish are there to see joined by the croaking of frogs and toads. Then when nightfall comes the night shift comes out. Deer are often heard (you may even see one), the bark of the fox echoes across the silent meadow, the owls start their nightly conversation and the grunt of a badger may be heard. The thought of putting a night vision camera out on the water meadow appeals as it would bring all the authors of these sounds to light.
Our water meadow is a rare and deeply valued gift to those who enjoy what it has to offer. Yet it needs help to continue to bring these pleasures- in short, your help! A couple of hours, a morning or afternoon, even a whole day. Whatever you can give will contribute to maintaining this wonderful asset.”