Warsop Footpaths & Countryside Group

 
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Annual Reports of the Warsop Footpaths & Countryside Group

Footpaths
In recent years our footpaths maintenance work was completed with our work sessions totalling over 300 volunteer hours. Each year we mow over 7km of paths. We also cut back several kilometres of adjoining hedgerows. Continuing uncertainty over funding and a shortage of new volunteers means that we cannot guarantee the long term future of this work.
Conservation work
We complete an annual grass cut in early autumn on the Rhein o’Thorns, following advice given by Natural England. We have continued to cut back the brambles on a section of the The Carrs Local Nature Reserve and also managed the trees and hedgerows we planted on the site. We also contribute to the removal of Himalayan Balsam from our waterways and submit the results of our surveys of invasive species in Warsop.
Each year we survey for water voles along a kilometre stretch of the River Meden.
Walks and social events
Our walks programme includes a varied range of expeditions mainly in Nottinghamshire. We hold social evenings with our friends and supporters. Members also attend the Greenwood Community Forest awards ceremony.
Promoting the local countryside
We continue to promote the local wildlife and the countryside to the community. Our monthly column in the Warsop & District News promotes our activities and interests. Our website and Facebook page also share our news and information. We have published booklets and leaflets promoting our local countryside and its heritage.
Networking
We continue to contribute to the Friends of Greenwood Community Forest Forum and Nottinghamshire Biodiversity Action Group.

 

Earlier Reports ...

2011-2012

Footpaths
Our footpaths maintenance work was completed on schedule this year with our work sessions totalling over 200 volunteer hours, a smaller total than last year. We mowed over 7km of path, a much lower total than usual thanks to the dry weather that restricted growth with many paths requiring one fewer cut than in previous years. We also cut back several kilometres of adjoining hedgerows many of which had been destabilised by the severe weather of winter 2010-2011. However Nottinghamshire County Council’s decision to scrap the P3 agreement with parish councils meant that our funding under this scheme was terminated. They made a payment to allow us to continue for this year but this represented a reduction of over 50%. There is uncertainty over future funding although we are hopeful that there may be an increase for the coming year. Warsop has an excellent footpath network and we play an important role in keeping it in good order and giving local people easy access to our countryside.
The death of Ray Cockeram last summer was a loss to this group, his hard work and humour on work days are much missed.
Conservation work
We have completed the annual grass cut and clearance on the Rhein o’Thorns, cutting the grass in early autumn following advice given by Natural England during a site meeting. We have continued to cut back the brambles on a section of the The Carrs Local Nature Reserve and also managed the trees and hedgerows we planted on the site. We devoted 45 volunteer hours to the removal of Himalayan Balsam from our waterways and submitted the results of our survey of invasive species in Warsop.
Group members attended a course on water vole surveying organised by Nottinghamshire Biodiversity Action Group.
Walks and social events
Once again our walks programme included a varied range of expeditions mainly in Nottinghamshire. Thanks to the members who lead the walks. Our group break in Northumberland was a success and is scheduled to be repeated this year.
We enjoyed meals at the Rumbles project at Vicar Water and the Jug & Glass at Nether Langwith. We are grateful to our Social Secretary for organising these events. Members also attended the Greenwood Community Forest barbeque and awards ceremony.
Promoting the local countryside
We continue to promote the local wildlife and the countryside to the community. Our monthly column in the Warsop & District News promotes our activities and interests. Our website has been updated to include analysis of our hedgerow survey.
Networking
We continue to participate in the Friends of Greenwood Community Forest Forum and Nottinghamshire Biodiversity Action Group.
Millennium projects
The Warsop parish hedge survey has been completed with 1402 boundaries recorded. A booklet interpreting this data has been published and is also available to read online via this website.

2010-2011

Footpaths
Our work programme ran efficiently involving a total of 315 volunteer hours on our workdays, which was the highest annual total for the last ten years. We cut over 8 miles of footpath and we also installed 5 signposts or waymark posts. Thanks are due to all of the volunteers who took part in workdays
Conservation work
Our conservation work on the Rhein o’Thorns now concentrates on grassland management following the completion of the scrub clearance. More flowers are returning and the area previously dominated by bracken is now predominantly grass and raspberries. The length of hedgerow we planted a along the edge of the Carrs Local Nature Reserve is becoming established and we continue to clear the brambles that were dominating part of the site. We have monitored invasive species in the parish and passed data to Nottinghamshire Biodiversity Action Group and undertaken some management activities.
Walks and social events
Our walks programme is attracting a steady level of support. Thanks to our walk leaders an interesting range of outings, both locally and further afield.
Promoting the local countryside
We have continued to promote interest in the countryside through our monthly notes in the Warsop & District News. We have installed a post marking the site of Jerusalem’s Well in Birklands.
Millennium projects
Our Millennium projects are finally making progress with the hedgerow surveying completed, having covered all 1410 boundaries leaving only the report to compile.

2009-2010

Footpaths
Our footpaths maintenance work was completed on schedule this year with our work sessions totalling 247 volunteer hours, a similar total to last year. We mowed over 13km of paths under the P3 agreement and cut back several kilometres of adjoining hedgerows. We also installed five signposts and replaced one waymark post. Warsop has an excellent footpath network and we play an important role in keeping it in good order and giving local people easy access to our local countryside.
Conservation work
We have completed the annual grass cut and clearance on the Rhein o’Thorns and we have also cut back the brambles on a section of the The Carrs Local Nature Reserve. We collected information about Japanese Knotweed in the parish and submitted the results to Nottinghamshire Biodiversity Action Group.
Walks and social events
Once again our walks programme included a varied range of expeditions in both Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire. Our expedition to the Snowdon was a success and we enjoyed three meals provided by the Rumbles project at Vicar Water.
Promoting the countryside
We continue to promote the local wildlife and the countryside to the community. Our monthly column in the Warsop & District News promotes our activities and interests. Our expanded website has been relaunched with the address www.wfcg.org.uk. Our plans for an updated map leaflet describing the local footpaths network are awaiting Notts County Council approval.
Networking
We continue to participate in the Greenwood Community Forest Forum.
Millennium projects
Hedge surveying continues with around 1181 boundaries surveyed and is on schedule for completion by 2012!

2008-2009

Footpaths
Our work programme ran smoothly, we recorded a total of 228 volunteer hours on our workdays, which was second highest annual total for the last six years. We cut over 8 miles of footpath, 16 if you count both sides! We also installed 4 waymark posts.
Conservation work
Our conservation work on the Rhein o’Thorns now concentrates on grassland management following the completion of the scrub clearance. More flowers are returning and the area previously dominated by bracken is now predominantly grass. We have planted a length of hedgerow along the edge of the Carrs Local Nature Reserve and we have also cleared the brambles that were dominating an area of the site.
Walks and social events
Our walks programme is attracting an increased level of support. Thanks to the five walk leaders for an interesting range of outings. The Northumberland trip was enjoyed by those able to take part.
Promoting the local countryside
We have continued to promote interest in the countryside through our monthly notes in the Warsop & District News. We have supported the Friends of Thynghowe by helping to install 21 waymark posts along the new Thynghowe Trail and we contributed towards the costs of the interpretation leaflet.
Networking

We have continued to participate in Greenwood Community Forest Forum meetings.
Millennium projects
Our Millennium projects are making steady progress with the hedgerow survey having covered almost 1100 boundaries leaving only another 300 to survey.

2007-2008

Footpaths
Our footpaths maintenance work was completed on schedule this year with our work sessions totalling 252 volunteer hours, the highest total since 2001-2. We cut over 13km of path under the P3 agreement, double that if you count cutting both sides! We also installed two waymark posts and repaired a set of bank sets. Thanks to the team of six regular workers who do the work. It is important that our footpath network is kept in good order and that local people enjoy easy access to our local countryside.
Conservation work
We have finally completed the scrub clearance work on the Rhein o’Thorns and we have also cut back the gorse from a section of the Hills and Holes. Hopefully we will be rewarded by the display of wildflowers in these areas and we have received complementary feedback from Steve Clifton of Natural England for our work on the SSSIs. On a less encouraging note, Mansfield District Council have not completed the grass cutting and removal that they promised on the area of grassland on The Carrs Local Nature Reserve that we used to manage.
Walks and social events
Once again our walks programme included a varied range of expeditions with invariably fine weather. A couple of the walks attracted only a small number of participants but everybody who took part seemed to enjoy all of the outings.

The local evening walks also proved popular and we intend to expand these events this summer. The two weekend expeditions to the Yorkshire Dales were another success.
We enjoyed two evening meals provided by the Rumbles project at Vicar Water and returned to the Hardwick Inn for our Christmas meal.
Promoting the countryside
We continue to promote the local wildlife and the countryside to the community. Our monthly column in the Warsop & District News promotes our interests and activities. The series of nine local walk guides that originally appeared in Warsop & District News is now available online via the Warsop Web and has attracted many ‘hits’. We are now adapting the walks to make a pack of walk guides that will be launched at the Three Parishes Walk in May. Our plans for an updated map leaflet describing the local footpaths network are awaiting Notts County Council approval.
Networking
We have been represented on the Greenwood Community Forest Forum and attended a Lost Ways workshop identifying possible old routes that may eventually be restored to the rights of way network.
Millennium projects
Hedge surveying continues with around 992 boundaries surveyed and is on schedule for completion by 2010!