Spring work morning

What a difference a fine day makes. Mother Nature was kind to us for this year’s Spring work morning and it was a pleasure to work by the pond on such a nice morning. And to see the return at last of the traditional Spring bonfire!

Nine energetic, enthusiastic and well equipped volunteers arrived. They trimmed, they strimmed: they pruned, they mowed: they cleaned, they tidied, leaving the site all the better for their hard work.

A tremendous effort and a great team.

Thank you to all of them and to the Manor Hospital for the welcome refreshments that gave us a mid-morning boost.

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Pond life

It was a lovely Spring evening tonight, Friday 31 March, perfect for Frog Foraying.

Of course, the frogs didn’t appreciate that so didn’t turn up, and nor did the toads.

But Chris and his three companions exploring the pond by torchlight spotted newts, common and great crested, with ramshorn snails, water boatmen, clouds of daphnia and other little beasties.

We can’t always see it but happily life carries on in the pond.

Thank you to Chris and to those who came a’foraying.

 

 

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The sun shines on the …

… reed removers!

Our last session this morning till the Autumn of removing reeds to prevent encroachment across the pond. Now we steer clear to enable the protected great crested newts to do their stuff.

Thank you, Will and David, what a team and a great morning’s work that has left the pond looking all the better for it.

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Seeking a Secretary

The Biddenham village pond – a green oasis, a cherished village amenity and an educational resource for the last 30 years – needs a little bit of help from you, please.

Our Secretary will be retiring in June this year, and that presents a great opportunity for someone, it could be you, to be involved with our historic village pond as our new Secretary.

The Secretary is a member of our team of volunteers (currently 6 in number) managing and conserving the pond and nature conservation area, and in particular looks after our four meetings spread through the year, any correspondence that might be needed, and notices of pond events and activities: it’s varied, interesting and not too time consuming.

Interested? Jenny Kimber (tel: 266921), our current Secretary, will be happy to have a chat and to help with any more information you might like. We look forward to hearing from you. Thank you.

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Sunday meander

The violets are out today down by the pond, there’s a small patch of snowdrops just coming to an end, and the moles have been pretty busy.

The recent rain has added some water to the pond, albeit it’s still no where as full as we would like, and we’ll have to keep an eye on the azolla slowly gathering on the surface.

Next Saturday morning, 4 March, all being well we’ll taking out some more reeds to hinder their encroachment across the pond, and it’s back on Saturday, 1 April, for our Spring work morning.

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Dates for your diary

Some dates for your diary:

  • Friday, 31 March for our annual evening Frog Foray at the pond;
  • Sunday, 11 June in the Church Barn, our Summer Splash Out and Friends’ AGM; and
  • Sunday, 16 July in the afternoon for our Summer Pond Dip, discovering the wildlife in the pond.

Watch out for more details nearer the days. We look forward to seeing you then.

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Seasonal greetings

From the pond team our very best wishes for a very happy Christmas and a happy, healthy and peaceful New Year to all our Friends, followers, volunteers, grass mowers and visitors to the pond and to this website.

A big thank you too for your support during this 30th anniversary year of the restoration of our village pond.

Please look out for details of forthcoming events in the Diary, in Splash, in The Loop and on the village noticeboards.

xmas-message

Posted in The Friends, Website

Spring work morning

A date for your diaries – Saturday, 1 April 2017 our Spring work morning from 10.00 am to lunchtime, down at the pond.

No fooling! We hope to see you then.

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Autumn Splash

The illustrated Autumn edition of Splash, reviewing our 30th anniversary year, is now at the printers and should be popping through Friends’ letterboxes soon!

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A grand finale!

Our 30th anniversary celebrations concluded in memorable style on Saturday, 19 November in a joint concert with The Friends of St James, with ‘Heart and Music’ providing a joyous blend of songs, poetry and fun.

It was not so much a concert as a musical show – we could have been in the West End rather than St James’s Church!  ‘Heart and Music’, based in Milton Keynes, perform particularly for charity and church events, and having seen their show last night we can’t wait to welcome them back to Biddenham.

pl-concert-1

They performed, not just sang, songs from a host of musicals, gospel songs and many favourites, accompanied and unaccompanied, solo, in groups and as a whole company. Their versatility was wonderful to see and their obvious joy in performing was infectious. We never knew quite where they would appear from, as the whole church proved to be their stage.  The music created by the plastic beakers for the Cup Song will have us all tapping away on the breakfast table for days to come.

There were many watery connections, as it was a concert to celebrate our pond’s 30th anniversary, but nothing had prepared us for the exuberant encore, loudly demanded by the audience, featuring the Frog Chorus – illuminated with little model frogs held high.

cropped-concert

Amongst the poems were those written and performed by Milton Keynes’ own poet laureate and member of ‘Heart and Music’, Mark Niel.  Did you ever expect to see a church full of Biddenhamites performing the actions to ‘My new teacher is an alien!’?  Neither did we, but they did – and with unbounded enthusiasm.

This was truly a night to remember.  And after the show, we all retired to the Church Barn for celebratory fizz, nibbles and a slice of anniversary cake.  Malcolm Crane, musical director of ‘Heart and Music’, performed for us once more by making the first cut of the cake.

pl-concert-2

Thank you to ‘Heart and Music’ – you gave us a wonderful evening and the grandest of finales to this anniversary year.  And thank you to all those who came along to support the Friends of the Pond and of St James: the proceeds will be shared equally between the two charities.  We can say without doubt that you all enjoyed yourselves.

 

 

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