UPDATE 35 : 3/5/01 'MAY DAYS'
Two children from All Saints Primary School, Ilkley have won prizes for their pictures in the Countryside Agency's Regional Newsletter competition. Dominic Wright and Rebecca Sheldon's pictures on the theme of 'How we will enjoy our Millennium Green' have earned them a WH Smith gift voucher to go towards a nature book for their class at school to use or a book relevant to the Darwin Gardens project.
The Agency has also presented the Darwin Gardens Trust with a horse-chestnut sapling which has been planted on the Green and dedicated to All Saints Primary School. Darwin Gardens trustees and the staff and pupils at All Saints are delighted at this result, and are looking forward to enjoying the Green to the full again this summer.
At present, public access to the site is restricted due to 'Foot & Mouth disease' prevention precautions. However our volunteers and contractors have been permitted to resume working on the project, and the 'Millennial Vision' belvedere is currently under construction at the highest point of the site. When complete, this will provide a magnificent viewpoint seating area, intended to mark the first anniversary of our official opening day.
The central base of a 'human sundial' has also been placed in position near to the picnic tables. Carved from local sandstone, it depicts a millstone in the process of being cut out from the rock (providing a historical link with the mill which stood below the Green on Mill Ghyll) - or alternatively the sun emerging from the clouds! 'Artist in Stone' Darren Yeadon will be returning to complete the feature by the addition of 'sun-ray' hour markers.
The splendid display of native daffodils above the ghyll was much admired by the 'Yorkshire in Bloom' judges who visited the site last month, and the roadside daffodils are also still providing a fine show. In addition, the snakeshead fritillaries are thriving in the developing wildflower meadow and can be seen from the 'car park area'. Volunteers are continuing to plant native species to augment and restore the traditional flora of the site, including further clumps of snowdrops beside the main path, primroses on the slopes above the ghyll, and cowslips on the bank below the 'Tree of Life' mosaic.
We have already noted a resurgence of existing plants such as violets and spurges thanks to the selective clearance of ghyllside scrub, and we have also incorporated patches of foxgloves, knapweed and goldenrod in appropriate areas on the Green. Please contact us if you have any 'spare' plants to donate that would be suitable for this semi-wild location; thanks for those which we have already received!
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