Beddington Farmlands had the latest of it’s Open Days so I went and had a look, writes Roger Mills.
So what did I see – well I saw a huge amount of potential, real evidence of change and a lake which was hidden to me and I suspect will be a hugely popular feature in the years to come.
To help everyone to visualise the future as part of the open day process a roadmap of the restoration work of the farmlands has been published plus a snapshot of the restoration go to FUTURE PLANS
The evidence of work in progress came from the green shading slowly showing itself over the newly prepared farmlands with the most successful cocktail of soil to ensure the maximisation of success. To counter the tons and tons of extra soil and drainage material for the farmlands there is a deft specificity planned to attract the widest possible wildlife. All of this work will also provide the necessary coverage of the equipment that is needed to ensure the landfill creation continues to develop safely. Owners Viridor has a 50 year commitment to this land but don’t expect manicured lawns, the objective is clear that they will manage the natural “chaos” of land that is simply allowed to develop in line with conditions.
I walked with several other residents who questioned our hosts on everything from fears of flooding to the diversity planned and amenities available. We were shown a new proposed wetland area which again emphasised the attention to detail as it was being devised to attract specific birds which will be “watched” in newly constructed hides . While walking up a track which will be a new cycle way we saw this truly remarkable lake which had been established for nearly a decade and was fed by a tributary of the Wandle but will be released to great scrutiny and so enjoyment with the launch of a Beddington Park link.
So the Farmlands are taking shape – it will be many years before they make the visible difference to the area that is hoped for but it is a strong next step – although extremely muddy after a deluge of rain.