Events - archive up to September 2019

2019

Bat talk and walk with detectors led by Rose-Ann Movsovic: Friday 30th August, 7.30pm, Ray Mill Island

Have you ever seen a bat swoop past at dusk? What a sight. Bats are amazing creatures and we are lucky to have several species in the Wild Maidenhead area. And here's a chance to look for bats in the company of one of the county's foremost experts; we are privileged to be able to offer a bat walk led by Rose-Ann Movsovic, who is an Honorary Fellow at University of Reading and one of the leading bat specialists in the Thames Valley. Rose-Ann will use a bat detector to help identify species. If we're lucky, we may pick up a Noctule bat (pictured above), which is one of Wild Maidenhead's target species in its Local Biodiversity Action Plan. 

This event is suitable for children aged 8+. 

​The event is free to Wild Maidenhead members who have paid their £5 annual subscription, or a suggested £3 donation from non-members. There is also the chance, on the day, to pay your annual subscription.

Rendezvous is Boulters Lock car park, evening charge £1. 

It helps us if you are able to sign up on MeetUp as we have an idea of numbers: 
www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/264307819.

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Past events

Special displays of insect-friendly flowers and plants - through May. Stubbing Nursery and Braywick HEATH Nursery

Stubbings Nursery will be again be supporting Wild Maidenhead's work to make our gardens more wildlife friendly. Stubbings will have a month-long special display of flowers and plants for pollinators. This is the third year that the nursery has taken part and we are very grateful. You can also buy other garden items which feature in our Wild About Gardens Awards

Braywick HEATH Nursery will be having a pollinator friendly plants and flowers display for the first time this year. Thanks to them for becoming involved. This nursery offers a support group for people with all types of disabilities, to provide disabled people with employment, training and work experience in a commercial business.

‘The Woodland and Trees of Braywick Park’ led by Jason Mills, RBWM: Saturday 25 May, 11am - Braywick Nature Reserve (meet at the Nature Centre)

This event is now full.

REVISED DATE/TIME/VENUE ‘Discover Local Flora’ led by Carolyn Foster and Mark Hemmings: Saturday 8 June, 2pm, The Thicket

This is a chance to explore the flora of one of the most beautiful and ancient wildlife habitats in the local area.  The Thicket was once a haunt of highwaymen, and is now owned by the National Trust who have carried out a great deal of work to increase the flora and fauna at this site. Butterflies can be found in profusion if the conditions are right. This is the first botanical walk this year for Wild Maidenhead, led by Carolyn Foster who is a local botanist, with Wild Maidenhead co-founder Mark Hemmings.

Park at the car park on the Henley Road, just north of the roundabout on the A4 on the left. 

It helps us if you sign up through MeetUp. Details of the MeetUp will be posted on here soon. 

Planting A Plan: Wild Maidenhead annual meeting - Monday 29 April - 7.30pm - venue details on MeetUp or by email

2019 is a big year for Wild Maidenhead! We've been working for two years on an ambitious and exciting plan to help wildlife and this meeting will be the first time we share it with our members and supporters.

Those attending will:
- find out from Fiona Hewer, Founder, about the habitats and species projects we'll be working on over the next five years as we roll out our Biodiversity Action Plan (BAP)
- hear from experts from Wild Maidenhead about their projects
- discover opportunities to join project teams, to help wildlife they care about, such as establishing wild areas for bees in our local parks, creating homes for stag beetles and sparrows, or planting food sources for white admiral butterflies
- give us their ideas and views

The occasion will also be a wonderful opportunity to meet the founders and each other, to talk about our local wildlife and to hear about Wild Maidenhead’s achievements in the last 12 months. It’s also the event where we formally but briefly cover the essential business items of our organisation (the AGM).

Come and listen and tell us what you think. We'll welcome donations to help cover costs and contribute to our work.

Please sign up via our MeetUp group if you would like to attend this event, https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/260243397/ or email us: wildmaidenhead@gmail.com.

Dawn Chorus walk: Sunday 5 May, 5.30am - Braywick Nature Reserve (meet at the Nature Centre)

Join us for THE experience which epitomises an English spring - a walk at dawn in the midst of nature, the air filled with fluting birdsong.

The walk is led by Wild Maidenhead's treasurer, Mark Hemmings, who is a recorder for the British Trust for Ornithology.

You are very welcome to bring guests and the event is suitable for children over 8 who are able to quiet when asked!

The walk is free to paid-up members of Wild Maidenhead (£5 per year - go to www.wildmaidenhead.org.uk/join-now). Alternatively, you can become a member on the day for £5 or we request a £3 donation.

It helps us plan for numbers if you sign up via MeetUp, www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/260824348/.

Braywick Nature Reserve is only a few minutes' cycle or drive outside the town, with plenty of parking for cars and lockable bike racks. Head south out of town on the A308, go past the site of the new leisure centre, then take the slip road on the left signposted Braywick, into Hibbert Road. Turn into the car park immediately on the left. 

‘All About Bumblebees’ - an illustrated talk by Trevor Smith: Friday 10 May, 7pm - Braywick Nature Centre

Trevor is one of Wild Maidenhead's co-founders and a bee enthusiast. He will be giving an illustrated talk about bumblebees, a chance to find out just how varied and interesting these essential pollinators are. 

Braywick Nature Reserve is only a few minutes' cycle or drive outside the town, with plenty of parking for cars and lockable bike racks. Head south out of town on the A308, go past the site of the new leisure centre, then take the slip road on the left signposted Braywick, into Hibbert Road. Turn into the car park immediately on the left. 

The event is free to paid-up members of Wild Maidenhead (£5 per year - go to www.wildmaidenhead.org.uk/join-now). Alternatively, you can become a member on the day for £5 or we request a £3 donation.

ACTIVITY - evening Toad Patrols: Ray Mill Road East, Maidenhead; Lightlands Lane/Strande Lane, Cookham; and Honey Lane, Hurley- through March

Three toad patrols run during March and toad patrolling is an activity that's very popular with families.

 

Volunteers are needed for a few hours whenever the toads are moving -  from around dusk, when the temperature is in or approaching double figures, and particularly when damp/raining. The migration lasts up to six weeks (usually finishing by the end of March). The toads are on their way to their breeding lake but in the way are roads where cars run them over.  We pick the toads up, put them in buckets and take them to a release site where they can lay their eggs. 

During warm(er), damp/wet evenings in March, please go to any of the areas mentioned and you should see other toad patrollers who will tell you the drill. If you can't see anyone, park and have a look for toads. Sometimes, no-one turns out, so don't assume you aren't needed!

There are also WhatsApp groups for the Maidenhead and Cookham toad patrols. If you would like to be added to either of those, to get day-to-day updates and to see alerts, please email wildmaidenhead@gmail.com with your mobile number or go onto the Facebook group and send the Admins a direct message with your request and your mobile number.  You can also email any questions to that email address. 

You need a torch and a bucket, and a high-vis jacket if you have one. Most people pick them up with bare hands - but don't use hand cream before touching them as their skin is very sensitive. 

Our largest Common Toad colony which lives around Ray Mill Road East/Deerswood/Summerleaze (Maidenhead). There are also smaller but important colonies around Strande Lane/Lightlands Lane (Cookham) and Honey Lane (Hurley). 

LAUNCH EVENT - WILD ABOUT GARDENS AWARDS (WAGA) 2019 - Friday 29 March - 7.30pm - Braywick Nature Centre

Wild About Gardens Awards 2019

Come to the launch of Wild Maidenhead's new Wild About Gardens Awards (WAGA) 2019.

Help us to become a community that helps its wildlife to thrive. Bees, birds, insects and amphibians increasingly rely on our gardens for food and shelter.

If you’re lucky enough to have your own garden, you'll learn about the 24 different ways you can make your garden more wildlife-friendly and find out how to enter your garden for a Bronze, Silver or Gold award. We'll have entry forms and plenty of advice if you need it. Jan Stannard will tell us about the 2019 scheme and show us the variety of birds, butterflies and other insects that can be attracted into your garden with a little help from you.

The WAGA scheme covers the parishes of Bisham, Bray, Cookham, Cox Green, Holyport, Hurley, Knowl Hill, Pinkneys Green, Waltham St Lawrence and White Waltham, and gardens in Maidenhead town itself.

Paid-up members of Wild Maidenhead can come for free (£5 a year: click here to joinor we encourage donations (£3 suggested) which help support our work. You are welcome to bring friends and neighbours. It helps if you go to our Meetup page to let us know you're coming: https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/259445249/.

Talk - 'Gardening For Wildlife' with Wild Maidenhead co-founder Rachel Cook - Friday 25 January - 7pm - Braywick Nature Centre

Loss of habitat is badly affecting bees, insects and birds, but we can easily make a real difference by planting wild flowers in our own habitats such as our gardens or in our streets. Find out more at this, 'Gardening for Wildlife', being given by Wild Maidenhead co-founder Rachel Cook. 

 

Rachel has singlehandedly transformed a small area of waste ground near her home in Maidenhead into a beautiful wildflower-filled patch buzzing with insect life. She regularly gives away young wildflower plants and seeds to Wild Maidenhead supporters. There is a knack to establishing wild flowers in an urban environment and Rachel will share her experience of what works locally, to best attract wildlife,  with those at the talk.

 

​The talk will also be useful ahead of this year's Wild Abou​t Gardens Awards in Maidenhead, where those with wildlife-friendly gardens can enter for an award for their work to support wildlife. The Wild About Gardens awards are being launched on 27 March.

Members and non-members and their guests are welcome. The event is free to Wild Maidenhead members who have paid their £5 annual subscription, or a suggested £3 donation from non-members. There is also the chance, on the day, to pay an annual subscription and attend the meeting for free.

There is plenty of parking at Braywick Nature Centre. 

If you use Meetup, please sign up here https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/257778552/ as it helps us to plan for numbers.

Event - 'Giving birds and mammals a home' - Launch of Bisham Nest Box Group supported by Wild Maidenhead - Sunday 27 January - 10am-1pm - Braywick Nature Centre

Several years ago, a group of local people began to meet every Wednesday morning to design and produce boxes for birds and mammals. The group is now producing an ever-widening range of inexpensive boxes to support wildlife. 

At this launch event, the renamed 'Bisham Nest Box Group' (BNBG) will set out its stall at Braywick Nature Centre on Sunday morning, 27 January. You will be able to see a range of boxes for garden birds, barn owls, tawny owls, little owls, kestrels, robins, blue tits and great tits, and swifts. The group also make boxes for hedgehogs and bats. Boxes will be available to see and buy on the day. Children are very welcome at this event. The group's new website is at www.bngb.org.uk

There will also be experts on hand to answer your questions about siting, observing and maintaining boxes. 

Members and non-members and their guests are welcome.  There will be a suggested £3 donation from all those coming, which BNBG have kindly asked be donated to Wild Maidenhead and WildCookham. 

There is plenty of parking at Braywick Nature Centre. 

If you use Meetup, please sign up here https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/257777343/ as it helps us to plan for numbers.

Talk - 'The Dragon and the Damsel' with Wild Maidenhead co-founder Brian Clews - Friday 8 February - 7pm - Braywick Nature Centre

Photo courtesy of Chris Towler

One can hardly go birdwatching, or just a general countryside walk, without becoming aware of our amazing Dragonfly and Damselfly community.

 

This presentation will look at the lifestyle of these amazing insects, the habitats they occupy, and dips into the basics of identifying some of them, as an appetiser to us all taking more note of them as they buzz around us.

The event is free to Wild Maidenhead members who have paid their £5 annual subscription, or a suggested £3 donation from non-members. There is also the chance, on the day, to pay an annual subscription and attend the meeting for free. Members are welcome to bring guests.

There is plenty of parking at Braywick Nature Centre. 

If you use Meetup, please sign up here https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/257956925/ as it helps us to plan for numbers.

Talk - '30 years of wildlife in my garden' with photographer Chris Towler - Friday 7 December - 7pm - Braywick Nature Centre

Chris Towler has been photographing the wildlife coming into his Maidenhead garden for 30 years. This illustrated talk will give those interested in attracting and observing wildlife in their gardens some pointers about what they might expect to see. He may also show one or two pictures which were taken elsewhere in the big wide world.

The event is free to Wild Maidenhead members who have paid their £5 annual subscription, or a suggested £3 donation from non-members. There is also the chance, on the day, to pay your annual subscription and attend the meeting for free.

There is plenty of parking at Braywick Nature Centre. 

Please go to Meetup, www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/256627495, to sign up to come to this event (this helps us to manage and plan for numbers). 

Talk - 'Birds in Winter' by Brian Clews - Friday 16 November - 7pm - Braywick Nature Centre

(Photo courtesy of the late Gordon Langsbury)

Could we survive a frosty night sitting in a tree? Birds have to! In this talk, Brian Clews will look at the strategies for survival of our resident and visiting species, and how we can help them. 

The event is free to Wild Maidenhead members who have paid their £5 annual subscription, or a suggested £3 donation from non-members. There is also the chance, on the day, to pay your annual subscription and attend the meeting for free.

More details on https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/256367494. 

Braywick pond - practical conservation day - Sunday 11 November - 10am - Braywick Nature Centre

We've been asked to help with the annual tidy-up of the pond at Braywick Nature Centre. 10am-1pm this Sunday, 11 November. 

 

This pond is much used by local youngsters for pond dipping who visit with their schools or parents. The activity will give you an hour or two in the fresh air and tea, coffee and biscuits will be provided.

 

We'll be raking up the mowings from around the pond and removing excess weeds from the pond itself.

NOTE: There will be a pause at 11am to honour the fallen and in particular, to remember those who died in World War One on this 100th anniversary of the end of hostilities.

 

Could you come along? If yes, please just turn up. The pond is in the Dell about 100 yards from the Nature Centre car park. There's usually plenty of parking at the centre. Address is Hibbert Road, Maidenhead, SL6 1UU

Activity - Wildflower Meadow Conservation at Bray Pit - Sunday 28 October 2018 - 10am-1pm

We will be joining forces with Windsor & Maidenhead Conservation Volunteers to rake off the mowings following the annual cut. The purpose of the annual cut and mow is to reduce the nutrients in the soil which encourages the wild flowers to grow, helping maintain biodiversity. 


Tools, tea, coffee and biscuits will be provided and you're welcome to come from 10am.

 

Bray Pit is a small nature reserve off the A308 between Bray Sailing Lake and the M4. In the summer the meadow is a glorious mass of wild flowers. There is a small flooded gravel pit surrounded by a strip of woodland, a mature hedge and a wide grassy bank with hoards of dragonflies and damselflies.

http://www.bbowt.org.uk/reserves/Bray-Pit

No need to book on MeetUp - please turn up (probably before 12 noon in case we are near finishing by then).

Activity - Wild About Gardens Awards - Thursday 25 October 7pm-9pm - Winter Hill Golf Club

As part of its mission to make local gardens more wildlife friendly, Wild Maidenhead has been piloting its Wild About Gardens Awards in Cookham this year, attracting some 50 entries. At this event, the successful entrants will receive their plaques and/or certificates.

 

Afterwards a panel of local enthusiasts will discuss various ‘wild garden’ topics and answer questions from the audience. It's a great opportunity to learn from others about the best ways to encourage wildlife to your garden - and how to prepare your garden for the 2019 Awards! It's planned to take the Wild About Garden Awards to other areas around Maidenhead next year, so there will be a warm welcome to those from further afield attending the event.

There is plenty of parking at the golf club. The entrance to the Golf Club is in Grange Lane opposite the junction of Grange Road with Terry's Lane in Cookham Rise.

Please sign up on the WildCookham MeetUp page for this event: https://www.meetup.com/WildCookham/events/254588159 

Activity - Fungi Forage - Sunday 21 October 2018 - 10.30am - Marlow Common/The Trenches

Join the ever popular Fungi Walk with Andrew Padmore, our local fungi expert, this year on Marlow Common/The Trenches. Andrew will show you how to find different types of fungi and how to identify what you've found. If the weather has been wet and warm, we should find many varieties and have a great display.

 

The event is free to Wild Maidenhead members who have paid their £5 annual subscription, or we ask for a suggested £3 donation from non-members. There is also the chance, on the day, to pay your annual subscription and attend the meeting for free.

 

It helps us manage numbers if you let us know you are coming on Meetup: https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/255447268/ - thank you. 

Activity - 'Ockwells Park - The 10-year Master Plan' - Friday 5 October 2018 - 10.45am for 11am start

Ockwells Nature Reserve and Thrift Wood were acquired by the Borough in 2016. Jason Mills, RBWM's Countryside Manager, is overseeing the land's long-term development with a focus on wildlife and managed public access and use. Jason will discuss the 10-year plan that he and colleagues have developed for the 86-acre site close to Lillibrooke Manor in Cox Green. Wild Maidenhead has worked closely with the Borough since the acquisition. 

Please note that this is a ‘technical’ walk to discuss the plans, but members of Wild Maidenhead are still very welcome. It isn't intended to be a wildlife-spotting/identification event, though interesting flora and fauna may of course be seen.  

Rendezvous in Ockwells Car Park at the cafe. There is usually parking available on site. Wear sturdy shoes as the ground is uneven,  and wellies if the weather is wet (or has been in last few days, as the site is prone to flooding). Not suitable for pushchairs. 

The event is free to Wild Maidenhead members who have paid their £5 annual subscription, or we ask for a suggested £3 donation from non-members. There is also the chance, on the day, to pay your annual subscription to Wild Maidenhead.

Activity - Bat walk with Rose-Ann Movsovic, Friday 31 August 2018,  7.30pm

Bats are extraordinary, mysterious creatures which flit past us on sultry summer nights catching insects by sound alone. Rose-Ann Movsovic, who is an Honorary Fellow at University of Reading and one of the leading bat specialists in the Thames Valley, will be leading a bat walk and using a bat detector to help identify species. 

In May, preparing for this event, Rose-Ann found SIX species of bat, so this is a Maidenhead bat hot spot. 

The event is free to Wild Maidenhead members who have paid their £5 annual subscription, or a suggested £3 donation from  non-members. There is also the chance, on the day, to pay your annual subscription.

Sign up now on MeetUp, https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/253806018/.

Activity - 'Oak tree bioblitz' led by Martin Woolner - Saturday 25 August 2018,  2pm-4.30pm - Ockwells Park

Martin Woolner, who knows a huge amount about the biodiversity of oaks, will lead a special afternoon looking at these greatest of English trees. There are many oaks, both young and quite old, in Ockwells Park and Little Thriftwood, and Martin will talk about the vast numbers of species that each oak tree supports. 

Please bring binoculars if you have them as well as sturdy footwear and suitable clothing. 

The event is free to Wild Maidenhead members who have paid their £5 annual subscription, and there is a suggested donation of £3 for non-members. There is also the chance, on the day, to pay your annual subscription.

Sign up now on MeetUp: https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/253726031/.

Activity - Jewels in the Meadow, led by Andrew Padmore - Thursday, 12 July 2018 - Waltham Place, 11.00am

Join Andrew Padmore for a walk in the wonderful private estate at Waltham Place. The estate is biodynamically and organically farmed, which results in a profusion of creatures including countless butterflies. 

Waltham Place seeks to work with nature, adapting and evolving to its ecology rather than producing a decorated garden. Natural gardening is all about one's relationship with the garden and its evolution, using  knowledge of plant systems and families.  They are staunch believers in all aspects of organic husbandry and in the holistic management of the estate. They seek to combine forces with nature rather than fighting against it, and to explore the boundaries between garden and nature. In doing so, they have created a haven to an abundance of insect and animal life, fungi and indigenous flora.

Please note that you need to book by calling Waltham Place on 01628 825517.

 

Also, please be aware that photography is not permitted at Waltham Place.

 

Please bring binoculars if you have them as it will help to see some of the tree-top species.

The event costs £5 per person (members and non-members)

Activity - 'Farmland flowers and birds', led by James Headington, farmer - Saturday 21 July 2018, 10am - Paley Street Farm

James Headington, who farms at Paley Street Farm, will lead a walk and discuss how he farms to make a living while supporting wildlife. 

Please bring binoculars if you have them as well as sturdy footwear and clothing which covers arms and legs (nettles).

The event is free to Wild Maidenhead members who have paid their £5 annual subscription, or £3 for non-members. There is also the chance, on the day, to pay your annual subscription and attend the meeting for free.

Please go to our MeetUp page to book in and for details: https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/252501952/

Activity - Butterfly Walk, led by Andrew Padmore - Saturday, 30 June 2018 - The Thicket, 11.00am

This walk was one of the most popular activities last year.  A great deal of specialist conservation work has been carried out by the National Trust and volunteers in The Thicket, which is now a butterfly hot spot. Last year, no fewer than 21 species of butterfly were discovered, including an amazing number of the impressive Silver- washed Fritillary. Many common and favourite species such as Red Admiral, Brimstone and Peacock were present but it was the elusive Purple Hairstreak (see photo) and White-letter Hairstreak species that proved the main target for the group.

We will try and observe some of the rare and faster flyers as well as seeing all the usual favourites if we're lucky. We will learn about how to support our butterflies in our own gardens and out and about. 

 

Please bring binoculars if you have them as it will help to see some of the tree-top species.

The event is free to Wild Maidenhead members who have paid their £5 annual subscription, or £3 for non-members. There is also the chance, on the day, to pay your annual subscription and attend the meeting for free. 

Please book in and find out more details at www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/248480759/

Talk - 'Urban Biodiversity' by Professor Nigel Stork, hosted by WildCookham - 11 June - Odney Club

We are delighted to join with our WildCookham colleagues in welcoming Professor Nigel Stork as a speaker for this very special event.  Nigel is one of the world's most accomplished biologists. He now works at the Griffith University School of Environment in Queensland, Australia.  He has also been CEO of the Rainforest Cooperative Research Centre and he worked at the Natural History Museum in London for fifteen years. Nigel has experience of working in many parts of the world including South and Central America, Africa and South-East Asia. He has published 10 books and more than 150 papers. He has been a pioneer of the exploration of tropical forest canopies with canopy cranes, installing an industrial crane in the ‘Daintree’ rainforest to assist researchers study the forest canopy. His current research focus is on the magnitude of global species diversity and extinction rates. 

The event is free to everyone but we welcome donations to cover the cost of room hire.

Book in at https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/250484938.

Activity - Moth Trapping with local expert Les Finch - 18 May 2018, 7.45pm - Braywick Nature Centre

Les Finch is the area's leading expert on moths. He will give a short talk about these amazing creatures, which fly all year round, by day as well as night, and then he will lead a moth trapping and identification activity. There are over 2,500 different types of moth in the UK and providing the weather conditions are right, we would expect to trap and identify dozens at this event.

The event is free to Wild Maidenhead members who have paid their £5 annual subscription, or £3 for non-members. There is also the chance, on the evening, to pay your annual subscription and attend the meeting for free. 

Please book for this event as it is likely to be very popular and numbers will be limited. Full details and event sign up are on MeetUp at https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/248480656/

Activity - evening Toad Patrols - Ray Mill Road East and Strande Lane - through late February and March

Our large Common Toad colony which lives around Ray Mill Road East/Deerswood/Summerleaze (Maidenhead) begins its migration near the end of February/early March. There is also a smaller but important colony around Strande Lane/Lightlands Lane (Cookham). 

Volunteers are needed for a few hours whenever the toads are moving -  around dusk, when the temperature is in or approaching double figures, and particularly when damp/raining. The migration lasts up to six weeks (end of March). The toads are on their way to their breeding lake but in the way are roads where cars run them over (the colony was once ~9,000 and is now ~2,000). We pick the toads up, put them in buckets and take them to a release site where they can lay their eggs. 

For both patrols, on warm(er), damp/wet evenings in late February/March, please go to either of the areas mentioned above and you should see other toad patrollers who will tell you the drill. If you can't see anyone, park and have a look for toads. Sometimes, no-one turns out, so don't assume you aren't needed!

There is also a WhatsApp group for the Maidenhead toad patrol. If you would like to be added to that, so that you know if a patrol is happening and to see alerts, please email wildmaidenhead@gmail.com. You can also email any questions to that email address. 

You need a torch and a bucket, and a high-vis jacket if you have one. Most people pick them up with bare hands - but don't use hand cream before touching them as their skin is very sensitive. 

Talk and AGM - Monday 16 April with Hilary Phillips of BBOWT - Grenfell Lodge

Hilary Phillips is the newly appointed Living Landscapes Community Engagement Manager at the Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire Wildlife Trust (BBOWT). Hilary will be talking to Wild Maidenhead members and supporters about BBOWT’s new Living Landscapes initiative in East Berkshire, a landscape-scale project that aims to link up habitats for the benefit of wildlife and people across a wider area,  inspired by the Lawton 2010 report which called for bigger, better, more joined-up habitats. She is also a bat specialist. 

Wild Maidenhead will also be announcing the list of 20 species which will be the focus of the five year Biodiversity Action Plan (BAP) currently being drafted by the Wild Maidenhead team. 

This is also the formal annual event for the organisation where officers are appointed/reappointed and the finances presented. 

Please sign up at https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/248479858/ to let us know you plan to be there.

Talk - 'Things Found at Ockwells Nature Reserve/Thriftwood' with local wildlife expert Martin Woolner - Friday 20 April - Braywick Nature Centre, 7.30-9.30pm

Martin Woolner helped to set up Wild Maidenhead and he is acknowledged as one of the foremost experts on wildlife in the area. He regularly visits the newest nature reserve in the Borough, at Ockwells Park/Thriftwood. This is a unique opportunity to find out what Martin and colleagues have seen and identified at this site, which is in Cox Green.

The event is free to Wild Maidenhead members who have paid their £5 annual subscription, or £3 for non-members. There is also the chance, on the evening, to pay your annual subscription and attend the meeting for free. 

Full details and event sign up at https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/249860955/.

Activity - Create a bluebell wood trail - Sunday 21 January, 10-12 noon at Ockwells nature reserve

On Sunday morning, Wild Maidenhead will be working with Windsor and Maidenhead Conservation Volunteers to create a trail which will run through the bluebells in woodland at Ockwells nature reserve when they're in flower. The path will help nature flourish without being stomped on! Activities should include barrowing and spreading wood chips, edging the path and clearing bramble. Please do come and help. 

 

Tea, coffee and biscuits will be provided. No need to bring tools, although if you have your own gardening gloves please bring them.

 

Park in the main car park (Postcode: SL6 3AA) and follow the signs.

 

Gardening gloves if you have them. Sturdy footwear is advised, especially if it's wet.

 

As usual, please sign up at https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/246864754/ to let us know you plan to be there.

 

Photo of the wood courtesy of Rach Cook

Activity - Dig for wildlife! Saturday 27 January, 9.45-12 noon at Ockwells nature reserve

Our local wildlife needs more places to live, hide and eat...and that's what a hedge does! 

 

Come and help us to plant native hedging plants at Ockwells nature reserve for a couple of hours. It's a lovely way to make a lifelong difference to wildlife and get fresh air and exercise as a bonus. 

 

We'll be working under the guidance of RBWM's Jason Mills. No equipment required, just good heart and the ability to wield a spade or fork. Bring gloves (not wool), warm clothes and a good coat with a hat, good boots, and worth bringing a flask of tea or coffee to keep the cold out!

 

Jason will do a health and safety briefing. 

 

Please reserve a place here, https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/246831757/, where you will also find details about where we will meet up. 

 

If the weather is appalling, please check MeetUp in case we have to postpone.

Members' talk - The Sound of Bats! 7.15pm for a 7.30pm start

We're very excited to let you know that local expert Peter Flory has kindly agreed to give us an introduction to the world of bats and their fascinating communications.

 

Peter is an expert in recordings and identification so will share some of his work with us, and also offer advice and support on how to identify our own garden visitors. Join us from 7.15pm for a 7.30pm start, for what we're sure will be a thoroughly enjoyable evening.

 

The event will be held at Braywick Nature Centre (Hibbert Road, Maidenhead, Berkshire, SL6 1UU) which offers good access and plenty of parking. This event is free to members and is £3 for non-members, but there will be an option to upgrade to an annual £5 membership on the night.

Please sign up on our MeetUp page, https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/246123708/ . Hope to see you there!

Wednesday 6th December, 10.00am-12.00pm

Bees!

We have a honey bee expert in our midst!

We are very excited to invite you to a members’ talk, hosted by local bee keeper, Bill Godenzie.

Join us from 7.15pm for a 7.30pm start, where Bill will share his knowledge with us around bees and bee keeping, and shed some light on what you can do to support bees in your garden.

 

The event will be held at Maidenhead Fire Station, 65 Blackamoor Lane, Maidenhead SL6 8RJ. We expect this to be a popular talk and spaces are limited so we recommend going to the MeetUp page (see below) as soon as possible to book in. If you don't wish to use MeetUp, please email wildmaidenhead@gmail.com with your details.

 

Parking is very limited so please do consider this when planning your travel arrangements.  There is some parking on the site (not on the forecourt as your car may be squashed by fire engines...) or in Hines Meadow car park a few minutes away. 

 

This event is free to members and is £3 for non-members, but there will be an option to upgrade to an annual £5 membership on the night.

 

Full details on our MeetUp page:

https://www.meetup.com/WildMaidenhead/events/245470557/

Saturday 25th November, 2017 10.00am-12.00pm

 

Hedgerow Planting

We're pleased to invite you to a new event whereby we'll have an opportunity to make a real, tangible difference to our local wildlife habitat!

Please join us for a planting project for a small wildlife area just off Shifford Crescent in Maidenhead. We'll be aiming to plant about 20m of native hedging to improve the wildlife value of the site.

Sunday 29th October, 2017 10.00am-12.00pm

Bray Pit: wildflower meadow conservation

We will be joining forces with Windsor & Maidenhead Conservation Volunteers to rake off the mowings following the annual cut. The purpose of the annual cut and mow is to reduce the nutrients in the soil which encourages the wild flowers to grow, helping maintain biodiversity. 


Tools, tea, coffee and biscuits will be provided and you're welcome to come from 10am.

 

Bray Pit is a small nature reserve off the A308 between Bray Sailing Lake and the M4. In the summer the meadow is a glorious mass of wild flowers. There is a small flooded gravel pit surrounded by a strip of woodland, a mature hedge and a wide grassy bank with hoards of dragonflies and damselflies.

http://www.bbowt.org.uk/reserves/Bray-Pit

 

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Saturday 8th July, 10.30am-12.30pm


Butterfly walk in Maidenhead Thicket

 

Local butterfly enthusiast David Fuller will take us for a short walk in Maidenhead Thicket. We will try and observe some of the rare and faster flyers. For full details please sign up at meetup.com. 

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