UPDATE 31 : 31 December 2000 'GROWING UP'
Continuing this year's tree-planting season, volunteer work parties have placed groups of colourful field maples and paper birches, plus a wild cherry, in various sites on the Green. These trees have been dedicated by donations from a variety of individuals and groups including: Barbara Chambers; Irene Flood; Lynn Hanson; Janet Ellum representing Homecare Services; Westwood Lodge; Ben Rhydding Women's Institute; Ilkley Playhouse; and Olicana Stationers.
Another addition is the 'Tillingham Pippin' apple tree donated by Fred Backhouse of Barwick-in-Elmet. This variety is a descendant of the trees noted by Charles Darwin on the island of Chiloe in Patagonia, during his epic voyage on the 'Beagle'.
We have also planted young oaks donated by Margaret Hunter and Peter & Pauline Wild; and are looking forward to helping Ilkley Rotary Club to fill the 'missing links' in the chestnut avenue along Wells Road, by planting the attractive pink variety of this tree - once suitable weather conditions return!
Volunteers are also working in the middle section of the ghyll, clearing out choked sections of the watercourse and trimming back brambles from the banks, to give good views of the tumbling waters. We are however retaining some areas of bracken and other ground cover plants to provide shelter for wildlife over the site, and to maintain valuable 'corridors' for wildlife movement between the slopes of Ilkley Moor, Mill Ghyll and nearby urban areas.
We have paid attention to the groves of trees planted last winter, by installing taller, wider stronger treeguards. These will give more protection, especially against inquisitive sheep, as the trees grow on. At this time of the year, management of trees and shrubs is a priority, and we are using fallen leaves cleared from the pathways as a mulch for the developing wildlife hedgerow.
As part of the pathway improvements on site, we have provided surfaced areas adjacent to our new signboards. The boards are already in use to display information about progress on the site, details of work-parties and other events, for visitors to the Green.
Looking back at our progress over the past year, the trustees would like to pay tribute to all the individuals, businesses, community organisations, local and national bodies, who have been involved in this project. We can all take justifiable pride in establishing this site as a haven for recreation & relaxation, education & inspiration - and a fitting commemoration of the Millennium in Ilkley.
Best wishes for a Happy New Millennium Year!
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