Nature Discovery Day

Come and join us in the Meadows on 30th May from 1pm-4pm

Part of London Rivers Week, this fun-filled afternoon will include activities for both children and adults to explore Chinbrook Meadows. With the River Quaggy flowing through it, Chinbrook Meadows is filled with mature trees and meadow areas and provides a great opportunity for all in the family to relax and enjoy the wellbeing benefits of being in a nature rich green space and near water.

Quaggy Waterways Action Group will lead a fascinating walk around the area, talking about the history of the park and the restoration work to the river done so far. Thames21 will talk about the wetland creation project that will be happening in the southern part of the park later on in the year and show how to carry out a riverfly monitoring survey to investigate water quality in the River Quaggy.

Family friendly fun will include an opportunity for children and adults alike to view plants and mini-beasts collected from around the site under the microscopes of Quekett Microscopic Club. ChART will also be running a fantastic clay workshop inspired by the river led by local artist Lily German.

You will see us by the Quaggy near the boardwalk.

To receive an event reminder and update with more details as these become available please register for a FREE ticket here

Improving biodiversity in Chinbrook Meadows

This year we were successful in our application for an “Our Space” award from Groundwork which will help us improve the biodiversity in the park. We called the project “On the Wing” as we hope to provide improved habitat for a variety of flying creatures; bugs, bees, butterflies, moths, dragonflies and more. This grant will also help local people find out more about what is around and learn more about how we can record what is around us and improve habitats for the future.

Our first event was in April when we planted a range of native marginal plants to enhance the diversity of the biggest pond.

We also used our newly acquired pond dipping equipment to observe and record the creatures we found in the pond, the session was attended by about 30 children and 30 adults and, with Glendale’s Conservation Officer on hand to advise, we were able to identify 20 different species (see list in “Buds, birds and beasts”)

Tennis Courts – further update

Tennis court renovations in Chinbrook Meadows is planned to be completed by mid-May. The following information from Lewisham Council gives a bit of detail to the new arrangements after completion;

Following the renovations, the courts will become part of the Play Tennis Lewisham scheme:

Key points:

A Season Ticket is available for play on the courts is £35 for 12 months.

This allows members up to 3 bookings per week. Each booking is 1 hour. The ticket is not restricted to an individual so a family can have a single ticket.

There is also the option to pay £5 per hour (£2.50 each for a singles game or £1.25 each for a doubles match) on a ‘pay and play’ basis.

The council is contractually required to maintain the sinking fund and all income is ring-fenced for tennis court maintenance and development only. For example, as part of the original LTA investment Play Tennis Lewisham programme, Ladywell Fields courts which were refurbished in 2017, have recently (April 2022) been jet washed and repainted costing £10,085. This cost is met directly from the ‘sinking fund’ and puts no pressure on the Council’s revenue budget.

Tennis development

Our partners South East London Tennis (SELT) have delivered the following activities across the borough within parks that benefited from the initial round of LTA investment (Ladywell Fields, Manor House Gardens, Mayow Park and Sydenham Wells):

•         Mini Tennis

•         Inclusive and disability sessions

•         Adult Cardio Tennis

•         Tennis Xpress courses

•         Adult Improver / Intermediate / Intermediate Plus / Advanced / Advanced Plus

•         Doubles Social Play sessions

•         Over 50’s

•         LTA Youth Start and Youth Programme

•         After School Sessions

•         Junior Holiday camps

•         Leagues and competitions

We will be working to develop opportunities like these in the new courts.

Our Space Award – “On the wing”

We have been successful in obtaining a grant that will help us increase the biodiversity of our park, making it more attractive to all kinds of creatures and an opportunity to explore and learn about the different creatures that share our lovely park. The grant has been provided via Groundwork whose aims within this project are to help Londoners to clean and green the city, create active community engagement and participation and increase a sense of community ownership over shared spaces.

This Spring we will be planting a variety of marginal plants around the pond and plants in our flower borders that will be more attractive to a variety of pollinators. in the winter we will plant some new trees. There will also be opportunities to learn more and help carry out surveys around our park.

Our first event will be on 4th April 11am-1pm. Meet at the boardwalk near the tennis courts to help plant marginal plants and take part in some pond/river dipping to see what creatures are around

Grove Park Carnival 2022

I am sure that everyone who attended will agree Grove Park Carnival was better than ever this year. It is such a well-established event for our park calendar now and the pirate theme was great fun.

The Carnival organisers kindly arranged for FOCM, ChART and Thames 21 to share a big tent this year and we had lots of people coming by to say hello and talk about our various projects.

Thames 21 had also organised for Quekett representatives to set up microscopes for visitors to use. We were able to look at some of the pond and Quaggy life from very close by. Here is an excellent report by Quekett about the day

The Carnival organisers would really like your feedback so, if you were there, please complete the very short feedback form for them, just scroll down the page. Your input will help organisers continue to improve what is on offer. I’m looking forward to next year already!