FRIENDS OF NEWTON St. CYRES ARBORETUM
Unfortunately some weeks ago a major limb of a beech tree – one of the largest trees in the Arboretum - came down and took with it some other trees. There was extensive decay in the basal part of the surviving trunks, so that the remainder of the tree has now been taken down on safety grounds. The felled timber will shortly be removed, but with this work, and the work establishing the new path, there has been quite a lot of wheeling through the Arboretum, making parts look a bit of a mess. We will be working on this during the next months to achieve recovery.
The highlight of the AGM of the Friends of Newton Arboretum on 17 May was the presentation of certificates to Margaret and Courtney Ware and Ron Nethercott making them Honorary Life Friends of Newton Arboretum. In making the presentation, Andrew Gee, Chairman of the Friends, said that these awards were made to mark the fantastic contribution that Margaret, Courtney and Ron had made over the last years to the maintenance and improvement of the Arboretum, involving very many hours of volunteer work. This was the first time that such awards had been made.
Some 40 Friends participated in the tours and the AGM. One tour was led by Frances Watkins, who provided insights to the mosses, liverworts and lichens in the Arboretum. The other was co-led by Vaughan Gallavan and Geoff Jackson. Vaughan featured trees and shrubs that had been planted over the last two years and plans for further planting, whilst Geoff demonstrated the fern garden that he has established with more than 40 contrasting ferns.
At the AGM, Andrew and Peter Watts, Treasurer, reported a very successful year. The number of Friends increased to 80 and their support makes a major contribution to the costs of maintaining the arboretum. With the recent award of £1,000 from Tesco and accumulated funds, a sum of £3,000 has been set aside to be used later this year for the improvement of paths to increase their suitability for push chairs and wheelchairs.
Brenda Vallance and Richard Whalley retired from the Committee and they were thanked for all their help. Sarah Curtis, Jill Melling and Margaret Ware were elected to join the Committee, with other members continuing to stand.
The Arboretum has been looking superb this Spring and we hope you have been able to make a visit There are two events coming up that will be held in the Arboretum:
Arboretum tours and AGM: Wed 17 May. Assemble in Parish Hall Car Park at 6.30pm
Two alternative tours will be offered. Frances Watkins will provide insights into the lichens, mosses and liverworts in the Arboretum. Geoff Jackson and Vaughan Gallavan will demonstrate some of the ferns, shrubs and trees planted in the last two years. The tour will be followed by tea and biscuits in the Hall and the AGM of the Friends.
No charge for subscribing Friends, but others will pay £2. This will be re-funded if you join the Friends (subscription £10) on the day
MidSummer Fest: Sat 24 June. An early evening event organised jointly by the Friends of the Arboretum, the Church and the Parish Hall. This will follow the pattern of the very successful event held in 2015. There will be bring-your-own picnic, competitions, live music, socialisation and relaxation. More details will be given in the June Newton Wonder.