2016 – March Mutterings

Our mad March day associated with “Clean for the Queen”, and accompanied by flurries of sleet, certainly achieved some attractive results in both CSP and CSG, together with some good publicity and a few new volunteers. Possibly, like me, you wonder why on earth “Clean for the Queen” suddenly came out of nowhere to a date in early March – I don’t know!! Maybe, the concept will be tried again nearer the June celebrations. By the way, despite rumours to the contrary, no, it wasn’t us who attacked the trees, decimated the fences and obstructed the road adjacent to CSP football ground.,

People keep saying to me that they are not surprised the river is running well as “we’ve had so much rain”. The Environment Agency publishes an interesting monthly round up of various hydrological data for SE England from which relevant highlights are that February Rainfall in the E Chilterns was only 86% of Long Term Average but, more importantly, the cumulative rainfall over the winter recharge period 114%. Our own data for the Chalfonts suggests rather lower figures but it is, of course, the rain up in the Chiltern hills that sets the pattern for river flow in following months. Graphs on the EA site show groundwater levels only now returning to “normal” territory after being below average for the best part of last year. This is reflected by the extent to which the river dried up north of Little Missenden and is now recovering, and perhaps supports a claim that we have helped maintain flow below Amersham through the Chalfonts when, without our efforts it might have disappeared?

Two very different outings in February: one to talk to Masters students at Brunel University at a seminar alongside others from, for example the wonderful London Wildlife Trust. Great talks but a totally dispiriting lack of audience engagement. The other to the cubs at Little Kingshill – a lovely evening! The boys listened intently, asked dozens of intriguing questions and scored very well in our little Misbourne Quiz – a credit to themselves and their dedicated “Akela” and her team. We look forward to doing some outdoor activities with them later in the year.

Those of you who cherish the provisional dates in an earlier missive will see that our next work date was booked for Saturday 2nd April. I know someone does as he’s been in touch to check that it is going ahead – (now that has to be a first!). Yes, indeed it is – please let me know if you can join us for what might be a rather more irriguous and less horticultural occasion than the last one. Future probable dates are also published on the website, together with usual monthly data updates etc.

Meanwhile, we look forward to chatting with anyone who would like to join us for “Not-a-meeting” at The Greyhound, Chalfont St Peter, next Thursday from 7.45 p.m. All welcome, just turn up, and, if you wish, bring suggestions for how we could do better, your Misbourne anecdotes, watercourse queries or just local gossip.

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