Perivale park is blessed with no less than three local nature reserves within walking distance. Of these, Perivale wood is the oldest and largest and is famed for its display of English bluebells. Normally only open one day a year to protect the plants, this year the Selborne Society, who look after the wood, have opened it on four “socially distanced” days in April.
Two years ago, work started on the Greenford Greenway project, which aimed to create a variety of green corridors in the area between the Gurnell leisure centre and Greenford town centre. This area of course includes all of Perivale Park itself, and the eastern extension into Longfield meadows where the wetlands were part of the project. Now that it is nearing completion, Richard has kindly sent me a list of the remaining things still to be done as part of this project. The COVID pandemic has of course delayed some aspects of this, but Ealing parks are still hoping to complete this.
The Perivale wetlands, which increasingly feature here, have a little stream feeding the ponds. In December 2019, a group of volunteers planted the edge of the stream with aquatic plants. Of these the Marsh Marigolds took a year or so to settle down and now there are lots of them along the stream and surrounding the ponds. Many of them look very healthy and we might expect this spring display to only get better with the passage of time.
Litter picking is an increasing activity. When we are out on a pick, more and more frequently we get asked questions by passers-by such as “where do I get those collection bags from?” or “how do I get a litter picking stick?”. Also, we sometimes go out on a pick only to find an almost pristine park; other litter pickers have clearly got there before us! Sadly, that is mostly not the case though. So what are my favourite bugbears? Continue reading “A Deep Clean of the park!”
Thanks to Richard and the Ealing park rangers, to Awards for All and to Habitats and Heritage, a fantastic set of gardening tools is now available!
Its late February, the snows have gone and the sun has come out. These are photos were taken on a circular walk which encompassed Perivale park and the blossom at the exit via Ruislip Road, on to the Cuckoo estate avenue and Hanwell community centre and park, then entering the Hanwell Big Local project and the discovery of a delightful small wood in the centre of the housing estates.
A few weeks ago, I noted that the Capital Ring path often includes a water feature, and made a plea for maintenance of the drain from which the water was pouring. Well, Thames Water have responded! Thanks to them!!
Five years ago, Perivale park and the adjacent Longfield meadows had only one pond, known to locals as the frog pond – and even that was only about 15 years old. Now – there are lots! Most are currently frozen and its going to get colder and they are going to freeze more! Here are some of them.
The Friends of Perivale Park group is now one year old and its time to report back what they have been up to this last year. If you want to find out more about them, why not join the AGM by Zoom on Monday February 15th, 19.30. You will also have a chance to ask the committee questions and to suggest new activities for 2021.
Yesterday’s snow has nicely highlighted something stirring in the raised beds, found in the orchard garden.
The show is always different and this one has its very own personality! Taken between 07.30 – 07.45
I am loath to describe our activity in the orchard garden as weeding. It is very much in the milder category of tidying. There are four wild flower meadows and four flower beds surrounding the benches to be tidied. Here are some photos of the ongoing process.
Some more, apparently unassuming, rainfall during the night transformed Perivale Park into an aquatic playground again. Here are some videos of the gushing waters.
Neil Anderson has sent this fantastic record of the birds he has spotted in the Park and surrounding areas, both in December and the whole of 2020. I will try to add a few photos of some of them later, but meanwhile can the Friends of Perivale Park wish everyone a happy new year and please call as often as you can to see the park and its birds!
Here they are:
With all these Zoom-based exercise classes which have taken off for obvious reasons in 2020, coupled with all the new facilities in the park, there is no excuse any more! And of course wash your hands after using them when you get home!
A few days ago, the park rangers responded to feedback that the route of the Capital Ring through the park was confusing some walkers, by putting up a number of new signs directing them in the correct direction (which is apparently a clockwise circuit of the ring).
The last two years we have applied to Bulbs for London and this year we were also successful in getting a lovely box of assorted bulbs and seeds. Amazingly, it included some Eremurus tubers! Now that is exotic for you. A start to the planting was made yesterday and this time we have selected the south-west corner of the park for the planting.
I encountered a licensed drone pilot the other day, and we have just spent a delightful hour taking photos of the park from an angle I have never seen before. Fortunately, recent rains have filled up the ponds and even the sun cooperated by setting nicely.
This event will be taking place on Saturday 28th November, 2021. Please note that the time shown below should actually show a start time of 10.00, not 11.00.
Just before lockdown in February, six new exercise areas on the path of the “5km” run around the park were created. But the lockdown delayed the surfacing with a soft compound (which health and safety presumably nowadays demands of such places). They have now been lined and appear to be ready for use. They are aimed very much at runners who want to address the upper parts of their bodies for some exercise. The last photo shows the large area recently lined and with anchoring points for six “full body” machines that will be installed at some point.
From having just one pond in the park three years ago (the one known as the frog pond) we now have an abundance, big and small. At the last count it was nine in the main park and three on the other side of the railway embankment. Perhaps the most photogenic are the three ponds close to the kids playground, close to Coston’s brook, where the reflections of sunrise can make for some fantastic photos. Now these ponds are being added to. A fourth swale is now being dug on the other side of the little feeder stream, in-between it and the surfaced kids playground.
This entrance is much used by local residents, many of whom are pushing kids buggies and whose progress has been hampered in the past by the puddles, verging on mini-ponds, that invariably form there when it rains. Some large ones have been seen with the recent rainy october.
A combination of constant rain and showers coupled with very mild weather has produced one of the best displays of fungi in the park for a little while. A particularly rich location is next to the large pond in the centre of the park (first photo, now gradually filling up with water) which was surrounded by trees in December 2018 by a Trees For Cities volunteering event. Each of the young trees were mulched with bark chippings, but a large mound was left over at the end and it is there‡ that you are guaranteed to find fungi at this time of year.
October is a favourite month for late summer colour. The Cosmos in particular always put on a good show and this year we had a lot of plantings of this flower around the park. In particular, the Gurnell-Greenway route along the Brent and Ruislip road and also the “three ponds” near the kids playground.
The 29km long river Brent, named after the goddess Briguntia (bringer of poetry, springtime and love) runs through the southern edge of Perivale Park on its way to Hanwell and the river Thames.
Visiting the park just before dawn is an interesting experience. It can be full of joggers and dog walkers and if you visit regularly you get to know most of them! I tend to go out to tidy up the park of litter before the commuters take over and perchance to pick up a spare roll of litter bags from the refuse collectors, who also tend to be out at that time. Today, dawn rose whilst I was passing the ponds and I managed the following snaps.
The last three days have seen near continuous steady rain. So its time to go out and see how the park (and birds) have responded. The ducks and gulls are out in force enjoying their new ponds. Meanwhile, some of the new paths in the Longfield meadows area have become ponds themselves.
Those of us of a certain age remember distant childhood times when everyone so it seemed had access to a local pond with abundant tadpole populations. Such a rain-replenished pond was dug perhaps 10 years ago in Perivale Park. For a fair few of these subsequent years tadpoles were indeed seen. However the pond was fairly shallow and had often dried out just before the tadpoles were due to leave it as frogs. Now its been enlarged!
One of the activities last Sunday involved a nature walk around the park. Here Neil Anderson has kindly sent us summaries of few highlights regarding sightings: Continue reading “Celebrating Perivale Park: Nature walk report”
Rectory park is to the west of Perivale Park and just south of Northala fields. The spring show there was subdued but recent rains have brought out the autumn flowers such as the cosmos wonderfully well.