Montefiore Community Woodland AGM 2022
Report from the Committee.
This year we celebrate 10 years since the formation of the Friends of Montefiore Woodland Group, when we took over the management of the site from Ramsgate Town Council, the owners of the site.
As with many aspects of our lives the work of the group was hampered by the restrictions of the Covid epidemic. During that period we were unable hold our regular work parties but the Woodland remained open throughout. I’m sure many members of the community enjoyed the peace and tranquillity it provided at that time. I’m pleased to report that the work parties are now back up and running and there is some catching up to do. The brambles, ivy and alexander continue to grow at quite a pace and need to be kept in check.
The wildflower meadow has not lived up to expectations. It was agreed that the grasses tend to hinder the growth of other species despite efforts to introduce yellow rattle and other plants. However, the number of butterflies and insects continue to increase in that area. Thank you to Dave Welch for mowing the meadow at the end of the growing season. Last Saturday’s work party planted out 80 native wildflower plants in the meadow which should make quite a difference to this year’s flowering. Thank you to Sue Smith for sourcing the plants and taking delivery.
Several trees have been removed either for safety reasons or to allow space for others to flourish. Thank you to Dave for overseeing this and for arranging for wood to be chipped and spread along the pathways. Always a great improvement. The intention is that logs be left in woodpiles to provide wildlife habitat but unfortunately, they are often taken away by members of the public.
We were very sorry to hear of the death of Alan Johnson. Alan was always there to help at the work parties as well as being a frequent visitor to the Woodland where he enjoyed sharing his knowledge of spiders and insects.
Thank you to Peter Atherall for advising and keeping a record of all plant species in the Woodland. Take a look on the website and be amazed at the number of different species – about a hundred and still counting.
The nesting boxes are maintained. It was noted that one of the bat boxes appears to have been vandalised, probably by woodpeckers. Pat Short has continued to top up the bird feeders throughout the winter months, attracting a variety of birds to the site. Thank you Pat.
Sue Smith continued with the butterfly transect from April to September and the Friends group also participated in the Big Butterfly Count. Full details of plants, birds and butterflies recorded in the Woodland can be seen on our website www.montefiorewoodland.org.uk
Bat walks on were held on Summer evenings and voluntary donations forwarded to the Kent Bat Group in support of their work.
Looking back over previous reports I note that graffiti and rubbish were a perpetual nuisance. I’m pleased to report that graffiti is no longer possible as ivy is covering the wall and on the whole rubbish is not a problem. We do a litter pick during the work parties and some of the regular users of the Woodland also pick up on their visits. Generally, dog walkers do pick up after their dogs but it only takes a few to leave it behind making it very unpleasant for everyone.
We are very grateful for donations received from our supporters this year. A special thank you to Geoffrey Frampton for taking over the role of Treasurer. He has had a very trying time in transferring our bank account with a view to keeping down bank charges but hopefully this has now been resolved.
Sue and Peter Smith Continue to do an excellent job in keeping the website up to date and looking good. We also have a Facebook presence which is useful for announcing events.
We have always appreciated out links With The Montefiore Heritage Group. Last year I became a member of the group and have enjoyed several events held by them.
We owe thanks to Ramsgate Town Council who have been very helpful and supportive this year and to the Racing Greyhound for the use of the room for our AGM.
Most of all we must thank our committee members and the volunteers who give their time and effort in maintaining and improving this little haven which is greatly appreciated by the community.
Friends of Montefiore Woodland