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IoW GG links

To look at the Isle of Wight Green Gym web page (contains details of sessions etc) please use the following link :-

The link to Twitter is

If you would like to leave us any comments then please use this link

Friday 24 February 2017

Fri 24th Feb 2017 - Update on Flowers Brook, Ventnor.

Remember all those hundreds of crocus bulbs we planted at Flowers Brook last year? Our efforts were not wasted, see the following message and photographs from Mark. Might well be worth a visit if you are out that way…….

Hi Guys,

I emailed Joan this last week to see how the crocuses which we planted at Flowers Brook were fairing.  I thought you might be interested to see they are up and doing well. Sorry I couldn't recall who  was with us on the day so have sent it around to everyone.
For your info we planted these corms last year for the  Rotary's Purple for Polio  

best wishes
Mark Russell

Hi Mark
This also shows the waterfall  which your group cleared to the top on the last visit.
Birds frequently use it now they can see light at the top.
Feel free to use any I send you as you wish.

Wednesday 22 February 2017

Wed 22nd Feb 2017 - Bouldnor Viewing Point, Yarmouth. GG # 673.

Alison's Photographs.

Inspecting the (lack of) sea-view from the bench.

Just a few of the logs that we cut up.
(the GGmers with log burners went home very happy!)

Clearing the path edges.

Yes, we DID cut all that down.

Making habitat piles.

Look at the size of the "saplings"
(as described by the County Press - see text)

Bet you can't guess what these two are 
peering at?

Well, it was these…something called Vertipools.
Want to know more, then click the link.

Mark's Photographs.

Although we have worked at this venue previously, it was a l-o-n-g time ago (Wed 11th July 2007 - Bouldner Viewpoint). Having all met up in the car park, it was immediately apparent what the task would be……the sign says Bouldnor View Point but the view was almost totally obstructed by undergrowth and overgrown shrubs. The short article in last week's County Press (page 5) described the shrubs as "saplings" but many of them were 8" to 10" in diameter so perhaps their description was something of an understatement? The council ranger had been working here to cut down some of the larger examples so it was down to us to trim these back and transport the logs up the rather steep pathway to the truck in the car park. All the trimmings were neatly piled up into habitat piles which should give shelter to birds and wildlife. Further work was undertaken to trim back anything overhanging the pathways and along the revetment that leads to Yarmouth Town. Needless to say, a comprehensive litter pick was undertaken and a surprising amount was collected from the bushes. The session was well attended and although the sky was overcast, it remained dry but a little breezy (storm Doris is due to hit us tonight!). A big well done to everyone who worked so hard to re-establish the wonderful view of the sea and coastline. Let's hope that it won't be another 10 years before we are back there again..!

Many thanks to Alison and Mark for taking the photographs this week.

Mark has received the following e-mail from the Shalfleet Parish Council, who sponsored this session.

Thank you very much for arranging with Mark Russell for Green Gym to come to Bouldnor Viewpoint.
I have seen the photographs on your blog and been to the Viewpoint and it is amazing how much you have cleared and tidied - well done.

Best wishes.

Sally M Woods (Mrs)
Clerk to Shalfleet Parish Council

News flash.  Did you happen to look at the pages viewed counter at the top of the blog page - we have finally broken the 500,000 barrier…WOOOHOOOO..!

Wednesday 15 February 2017

Wed 15th Feb 2017 - Quarr Abbey, Binstead. GG # 672.

Terry's Photographs.

The long trek from the car park to the work site.

The next-door neighbours were a little sheepish!

"And today we will be working on…"

"cutting back the undergrowth…"

"and cleaning out the ditches"
(Merlin, the dog, keeps an eye on his owner)

A man on a mission.

It wouldn't be a REAL GG session without a fire.

All pull together..!

Looking clearer.

Did we cut all that..???

The ditch has running water once again.

Although the session started off dry, it wasn't long before the drizzle started which, after a short time, turned to more persistent rain. The brief was to continue the work carried out on our recent visits to this venue - clearing undergrowth along the NW boundary and clearing out the drainage ditches. Our visits to Quarr always seem to be particularly well attended and this session followed that trend.

Many thanks to terry for the photographs this week.

The latest GG member - Gizmo, an eight week old Havaton (Google it..!). Seems rather relaxed about it all! Thanks for the photograph Alison.

Wednesday 8 February 2017

Wed 8th Feb 2017 - Bouldner Forest, Yarmouth. GG # 671.

Terry's Photographs.

Too busy to take in the wonderful view.

Steve, rooting around in the gorse!

Keeping the home fires burning.

Yes, the fire was VERY SMOKY…!

Look carefully - can you spot the plume moth?

Wonder if they could see us from North Island?

Far fewer clumps of gorse in this photograph.
Well done Team GG.

With the car fuel tank topped-up it was off to West Wight for our Wednesday morning session (well, it is a long way to go in IoW terms..!) With a chilly N Easterly wind blowing across the Solent it was never going to be too warm working at this exposed site. The brief was very simple…. hack down all the gorse that you can find, drag it back to the bonfire and burn it. The good thing about burning gorse is that, once you get the fire blazing well (white heat) then you can just pile it on. The down side is that it burns VERY smoky and people could be seen to change where they were working to avoid the smoke plume. As with most of these sort of tasks, the area around the fire site gets cleared reasonably quickly and then things slow down when the arisings have to be dragged further and further. Considering just how much gorse there is to cut, acres of it, we made really good progress.

During the tea break at this session the conversation turned to our previous visits to this site and…in particular, one visit  back in 2012. This session has gone down in GG folk law as one of the hardest we ever tackled! Have a look at this link for details - Wed 6th June 2012 - Bouldnor Forest.

Many thanks to Terry for the photographs this week.

Wednesday 1 February 2017

Wed 1st Feb 2017 - Pig Leg Lane, Swanmore, Ryde. GG # 670.

Alison's Photographs.

Cutting into the "jungle".

Draging out the arisings.

Opening up along one of the footpaths.

Digging ditches down by the stream / pond.

Just some of the litter we collected.

With the overnight rain dying away and unseasonably warm temperature, our Wednesday session was very pleasant weatherise. Everyone has now found their favourite place to park when we visit this venue so GGmers can be seen arriving from all points of the compass as 10:00 approaches. Having walked from the north of the site to the south, picked up tools from the van and had a quick briefing, it was then all the way back to the north to start work…phew..! The majority of our task was to grub out the blackthorn, hawthorn and bramble that has over grown many of the footpaths that criss-cross this huge site. All the arisings were dragged to clear areas and neatly stacked for future disposal. Work around the pond area was continued with further cutting back of the undergrowth and digging drainage ditches in an attempt to divert some of the water from the boggy areas to the pond. Come break time it was another north to south route march for tea at the van and…yes you have guessed it…. all the way back again after tea. Well, it is called Green GYM…so what do we expect?
Still not sure about the new name for this site but it is becoming a firm favourite to visit on the GG calendar. There has already been huge improvements here but there is certainly enough remaining to keep us occupied for many years to come!

A big thank you for the photographs this week.