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Noakes Grove Newsletter - May 2018

Noakes Grove Open Day - Lambs & Wildlife Day

Saturday May 5th from 10:00 am - 4:00 pm


Parking for visitors to Noakes Grove Open Day

Please use the Sewards End Village Hall car park and then walk to Noakes Grove (half a mile along Redgates Lane - follow the signs).

The small Noakes Grove car park will also be available for those prepared to risk the ruts and wet field. To avoid tiring toddlers and anyone else who might find the walk difficult, we suggest you drop them at the reserve and take the car back to the Village Hall


There are three lambs belonging to two ewes, two young rams and nine ewes that are either too young (4) or too old (5) to have lambs this year:


  • 10.00 Inspection of small mammal traps - walk and talk by David Corke
  • 10.30 Inspection of moth trap - David Corke
  • 10.30 Forest Fun (1) - Sarah Allington
  • 11.00 Guided walk of the reserve/meet the sheep - Emma Horton
  • 11.30 Puppet show (1) - Elaine Corke and Andrew Watson
  • 12.00 Story time (1) - Elaine Corke
  • 12.30 Outdoor cooking - do you like nettles? - Jan Wrigley and David Corke
  • 1.00 LUNCH (bring a picnic if you don't fancy sausage and nettle surprise)
  • 1.30 Forest Fun(2) - Sarah Allington
  • 2.30 Story time (2) - Elaine Corke
  • 3.00 Guided walk of the reserve/meet the sheep - Jan Wrigley
  • 3.00 Bug hunt - David Corke
  • 3.30 Puppet show (2) - Elaine Corke and Andrew Watson
  • 3.45 Release of mice, voles and moths
  • 4.00 Event closes
  • Tea, coffee, our Ellis Green apple juice and cake available all day’ - Jan and David Wrigley
  • Toddler area available all day - Susie Boatman [Note - a parent is expected to remain with its toddler, this is not a child care group]
  • Maps and guide leaflets are available at the gate for those making a self-guided tour of Noakes Grove

Entry donations: We don't ask for a donation from our existing "friends" and "shareholders" but we would like some help from other visitors. A donation of at least £5 per car will give one of your group a year's membership as a "Friend of Noakes Grove".

Finding Noakes Grove:

  • Come on foot from Saffron Walden - Click for map and instructions
  • Come by bus from Saffron Walden - Click for timetable, map and instructions
  • Come by car - There will be special road signs for Noakes Grove showing directions, starting in the middle of Sewards End. Or put CB10 2LW in your SatNav (this takes you to Redgates Lane, then follow the signs).

Volunteers for the Open Day

We need some more volunteers to help at the open day, there are lots of ways you could help for example:

  • "Meet and Greet" desk at reserve entry
  • Car parking guidance
  • Refreshment stalls
  • Any of our other activities listed above, where you have some relevant skills

Please email Help at Noakes Grove with offers of help. Thank you.


RIVERMEAD - our new nature reserve

Rivermead aerial photo

Thanks to the generosity of Robert and Suzanne Walker we have been given the free use of their four acre meadow on the borders of Hempstead and Steeple Bumpstead.

  • Rivermead is in both parishes because the River Pant that runs through it is the parish boundary. Rivermead north is a grassy meadow with many cricket bat trees. Rivermead south is a lush meadow half of which we will use for grazing some of our sheep and the other half to take a hay crop for winter feed.
  • Both we and the Walkers want to increase the variety of wild flowers in the grassland and we are confident that traditional grazing and hay-making will do this.
  • We urgently need some shepherds or shepherdesses who live close to Rivermead and who are willing to spend 30-60 minutes on one day each week checking the sheep are OK. Please email is you are interested in helping
  • Initially, access will be rstricted to those helping with sheep visits. Robert and Suzanne have agreed to us creating permissive paths around the edge of Rivermead and these will give access to our Friends and supporters as soon as the paths are marked out.



New luxury barn - a present for Noakes Grove

We are really grateful to Gilly and Fred Bamber for the donation of a valuable double stable building which is currently on a block of their land which is about to have a new house built on it.

New Barn foe Noakes Grove

Over the next few weeks we will be dismantling the stable and re-erecting it a few hundred yards along the road in Noakes Grove. We plan to use one of teh stables for storing hay and the other for a lambing barn and storage of essential items of equipment. As it will be a farm building on registered agricultural land Uttlesford's planning officer has assured us there should be no difficulty with obtaining planning consent.

We will be looking for volunteers when the time comes to move the building to Noakes Grove. If you may be able to help please email


Waitrose donation

The race to see how much of the £1000 monthly "good cause" donation from Waitrose will end at 9:00pm on 30th April. lMany thanks to Waitrose, and to all their customers who chose to vote to help Noakes Grove. Waitrose also allowed us to display our leaflets which resulted in new supporters signing-up as "Friends" and considerable interest in this Saturday's Open Day




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