A busy summer for the Friends of Melton Country Park

It has been a busy summer for the Friends of Melton Country Park.
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Volunteer work groups have been trimming reeds to clear the view for bird watchers using the lakeside hide and treating the new wooden animal sculptures.

Members have also been tending and weeding the developing wildflower bed, and tidying up some of the weeds and overhanging brambles to clear pathways.

The Friends had a real boost when they received a donation from the Ragdale Hall Community Chest fund, run in association with the Melton Times, which enabled them to buy litter picking hoops and provide more bat boxes for the Country park.

Members of the Friends of Melton Country Park tending the Covid Memorial beds and sculpturesMembers of the Friends of Melton Country Park tending the Covid Memorial beds and sculptures
Members of the Friends of Melton Country Park tending the Covid Memorial beds and sculptures

The group also received a generous donation from Melton Olympic Cycling Club, following their race held in the park in June, plus a very kind gift from the family of one of its founder members, Jean Forbes, who passed away recently.

In mid-May the Friends held their AGM, hosted again at Round Corner Brewing’s tap room.

Following the formalities, they enjoyed a tree identification quiz organised by local tree warden, Paul Greene.

They soon learned that identifying trees from just their leaves and twigs wasn’t as easy as first anticipated and that some additional study would be required.

Friends of Melton Country Park volunteers cutting reeds near the bird hideFriends of Melton Country Park volunteers cutting reeds near the bird hide
Friends of Melton Country Park volunteers cutting reeds near the bird hide

Some of the Friends enjoyed a walk around the country park in August with members of the Leicestershire and Rutland Bat Group.

There are three species of bats usually resident in the park and although they were only able to see two this time – Daubenton’s and Pipstrelle – it was another fascinating evening.

They hope to see the elusive Noctules next year.

The group’s hope is that with the addition of more bat boxes in the park, they can provide safe spaces for the bats to nest and breed with protection from the elements and predators.

Friends of Melton Country Park volunteers tending the wildflowers in the Royal BedFriends of Melton Country Park volunteers tending the wildflowers in the Royal Bed
Friends of Melton Country Park volunteers tending the wildflowers in the Royal Bed

Friends members hold Saturday work group sessions and the next ones are October 7 and November 4.

New Friends and volunteers are always welcome to come along and take part.

Volunteer sessions usually start at 10.30am, meeting at the main car park and cafe, unless otherwise specified.

Email fomcp@hotmail.com for more information or find the group on Facebook.

Everyone is welcome to join the Friends and they can feel free to bring along a friend.

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