STUDENTS from the Reaseheath College
Countryside Management department were out in force in the Nantwich
Riverside at the end of May, assisting Riverside Concern and Greenspaces
South Cheshire CIC with the community management of our local green spaces.
Thanks to funding from Nantwich Town
Council, local community group Riverside Concern worked with some 30
students who assisted with the continued management of riverside
vegetation as instigated by the former Nantwich Riverside Project.
Works were facilitated by Greenspaces
South Cheshire CIC and involved the removal of the problematic exotic
invasive weed known as Himalayan Balsam.
This activity, sometimes known
as "Balsam Bashing", involves working as a group to identify and pull up
the weed, then heaping it up and jumping on piles to crush the
soft watery stems to ensure that it doesn't re-grow.
Himalayan Balsam, a relation of the Bizzy Lizzy, is
a garden escapee which is now causing a huge
problem nationally due to its ability to spread very rapidly and choke
out native plants and reduce biodiversity. A single plant is able
to produce thousands of seeds which spread from exploding pods and can
be easily carried by rivers downstream to spread further.
Riverside Concern Chairman, Tony Tengwall, said: "Himalayan Balsam
is something that we have been dealing with for some years and we are
really pleased about the input from Reaseheath College for continued
efforts to improve the Nantwich Riverside area for people and wildlife.
"We would also like to thank Nantwich Town Council who have provided essential funding to ensure that
initiatives on the riverside continue via our delivery partner,
Greenspaces South Cheshire CIC."
FUNDING NOTE: Last year, Greenspaces South
Cheshire CIC received £4,500 from Cheshire Community Action and private
donations (see Tales
from the Riverside). This year we have
received £1,000 from Nantwich Town Council
for improvements in Riverside.
Article written by James Thompson,
Greenspaces' Executive Director. He also took the picture above.
Main picture: Neville Care, Curriculum
Manager, Countryside, Environment and Arboriculture,