Marvel at our meadows

August 01 2019
Marvel at our meadows

News from the Friends of Eastville Park, by the Parkie

AS summer wraps us all in its warm embrace, the park is once again full of the sights, sounds and smells that we all enjoy at this time of the year.

The wide variety of landscape that offers wide open space alongside a sometimes hidden but well- trodden path through woodland and riverside tranquillity seems to draw ever more folk to our park.

The wildflower meadows in Everest Road field have proved to be a huge success, with people coming from far and wide to wonder at the riot of colour and to watch the fascinating pollinating insects as they flit from flower to flower.

A special thanks to all those who helped us prepare the ground for seeding- it’s certainly paid off!

At the water’s edge there is an amazing aerial display to be seen from demoiselle and dragonfly, while at the lake a group of four heron have been entertaining visitors with their superbly refined fishing technique, which seldom fails. It should come as no surprise, too, that this month sees the Big Butterfly Count, with such a large variety on view in the park. Our efforts over the last year to encourage visitors to feed the swans and ducks a more varied diet has been very encouraging, with a big increase in folk bringing seed mixes to the lake. A fair bit of controversy recently about bread being fed to the birds but we are sticking to our belief that a varied diet never did us any harm and we think it’s probably the same for birds! The lily pond next to Kingfisher island is packed with blooms while the recently improved reeded refuge at Tawny island has benefited from some extra setting of aquatic plants.

In July, the Environment Agency carried out an annual survey of the fish population in the River Frome using a device that passes a small stunning current into the water, netting the fish and recording the statistics before releasing them unharmed, back into the river. Very interesting to watch if you get the chance.

GoodGym have been fantastic in July, completing a 5K run then taking on the mammoth task of weeding around the lake. Thank you all! We are aware that a fair few of the paths and lanes around the park are difficult to pass through at the moment and are talking to the parks dept to see if anything can be done.

Away from the natural world, the new MUGA has proved hugely popular and, on a nice day, there’s hardly room to move in there! But we are having an increasing problem with litter being left strewn around and it really is spoiling the experience, so please spread the word and encourage use of bins (there are more going in shortly).

The Pop-Up Café at the Bowling Green has been a great success with some amazing food, great vibes and live music: we’re next open August 10 and 31, from 9am-1pm. You can pick up a bottle of our Eastville Park Elderflower Cordial while you’re here.

If you’ve passed by the Bowling Green recently, you'll have noticed a lot of activity in the garden and around the wartime Nissen hut, including the wonderful mural being painted onto one of the garden walls. Huge thanks to Immy Robins for all her hard work and generosity. Another work is about to be started on another wall by Paul Gulati and Jackie Mayo.

We’re so excited and can’t wait to see them completed! The Friends Group are embarked on a mission to renovate the building, giving it a new lease of life and hopefully transforming it into a place where we can all look forward to lots of lovely community things happening in the not too distant future. It’s a hard slog but we’re sure it will be worth it!

If you’d like to help with the renovations, the garden or the café, please get in touch with us through our Facebook page or at

Finally, something very topical and quite amazing: In 1969, while Apollo 11 was out of sight and out of contact around the dark side of the moon, Siobhan Kierans’(one of our members) dad was working at a tracking station in Australia maintaining contact with them until they came around the other side! Cool.