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  • hilly 6:01 pm on November 29, 2016
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    Christmas Fairs at Christ Church and Woodlands Farm 

    Woodlands Farm Christmas fair poster 2016

    Father Christmas has a busy weekend coming up in Shooters Hill: he’s visiting St Nic’s Fête at Christ Church on Saturday and Woodlands Farm Christmas Fair on Sunday.

    St Nic’s Fête runs from 4 to 6 pm on Saturday, 3rd December. There will be a visit from St Nicholas who will bring a gift for all the children present. There will also be Mulled wine, mince pies, homemade cake, crêpes, biscuit decorating, tombola, a treasure hunt, children’s activities, a Christmas gift stall, and local craft stalls. Then there is a children’s disco from 5.00pm. Entrance costs £3.00 per child with a £5.00 cap per family.

    Christ Church St Nic's Fair poster

    Maureen sent me details of Woodlands Farm‘s annual Christmas Fair on Sunday 4th December from 11.00am to 3.00pm:

    All are welcome at the Woodlands Farm Trust Christmas Fair.  Come and meet Father Christmas, sip mulled wine whilst browsing stalls of local produce and crafts for early Christmas present ideas, or relax in our café while the kids enjoy crafts and games.  A great festive day out for all the family.  Entry is free, but donations are welcome – all money raised helps us to care for our animals. A great family day out!

    No parking on site – please use public transport.

    While at the farm there may be a chance to see some of the farm’s new arrivals: British White cow Clover’s new calf and two other recent additions to the farm’s herd.

    Father Christmas arriving at Woodlands Farm drawn by Bob the pony

    Father Christmas arriving at Woodlands Farm drawn by Bob the pony

    Clover and her new calf

    Clover and her new calf

    Woodlands Farm's new calves

    Woodlands Farm’s new calves

     
  • hilly 3:21 pm on November 28, 2016
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    Film Night at the Shooters Hill Local History Group 

    Memorial in Woolwich Cemetery to those killed in the Princess Alice disaster

    Memorial in Woolwich Cemetery to those killed in the Princess Alice disaster

    Shooters Hill Local History Group will be meeting on Thursday, 1st December at Shrewsbury House starting at 8.00pm. Steve wrote to me with the details:

    The Shooters Hill Camcorder Club are putting together a local history film night for the Shooters Hill Local History Group on Thursday 1 December at 8pm at Shrewsbury House.
    Short films will include ‘After the Storm’ about the 1987 storms; ‘Down to Earth’ featuring the tunnels under Greenwich Park and ‘The Princess Alice Disaster’ telling the story of the sinking of the passenger paddle steamer.
    Everyone welcome.
    A visitor fee applies.

    Sounds like a really interesting meeting!
    There’s an imposing memorial to those who died in the sinking of the paddle steamer Princess Alice near Woolwich in 1878. The inscription on the memorial tells the story of what happened:

    The Saloon Steamer
    “Princess Alice,”
    Returning from a pleasure excursion
    Was wrecked off Tripcock Point
    By collision with
    The steam collier “Bywell Castle,”
    On the night of
    September 3rd 1878.
    It was computed that
    Seven Hundred
    Men women and children
    Were on board,
    Of these about 550 were drowned
    One hundred and twenty were buried near this place.
    To the memory
    Of those who perished
    This cross
    Was erected
    By a
    National sixpenny subscription
    To which
    More than 23000 person contributed.

    Inscription on memorial to those who died in The Princess Alice Disaster
    Inscription on memorial to those who died in The Princess Alice DisasterInscription on memorial to those who died in The Princess Alice Disaster
     
  • hilly 5:47 pm on October 18, 2016
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    The WElling WILL REMEMBER THEM project at Shooters Hill Local History Group 

    The Welling War Memorial in its current position at St John the Evangelist Church

    The Welling War Memorial in its current position at St John the Evangelist Church

    Shooters Hill Local History Group‘s next meeting is on Thursday, 20th October at Shrewsbury House starting at 8.00pm. Steve wrote to me with the details:

    A presentation is being given by a member of the East Wickham and Welling War Memorial Trust to the SHLHG on Thursday 20 October at Shrewsbury House at 8pm. A visitor fee applies.
    The presentation is about the WElling WILL REMEMBER THEM community project which received Heritage Lottery funding.
    The project researched those men from the district who served and died in the First World War. See also http://www.ewt.org.uk

    The East Wickham and Welling War Memorial Trust was established following the First World War to raise funds to construct a Memorial Hall  dedicated to the men from the local district who fell in the war. The hall is no longer in existence and the Trust re-registered as a grant giving charity in 1995. Since October 1995 the Trust has awarded grants of over £600,000 to the community, and is probably now the largest source of community funding in East Wickham and Welling.

    The WElling WILL REMEMBER THEM project was set up in 2013 to research and tell the stories of the local men from East Wickham and Welling who fought in the First World War.  Local people were recruited as Research Volunteers to uncover the stories of the 105 men who are listed on their war memorial and to find out about other men from the local area who fought in the Great War.  They were assisted by Year 5 and Year 6 children at Foster’s School who researched some of the men who attended their school.

    Sounds like another interesting meeting at the Shooters Hill Local History Group.

    The Welling War Memorial in its current position at St John the Evangelist Church

    The Welling War Memorial in its current position at St John the Evangelist Church

     
  • hilly 6:32 pm on October 9, 2016
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    Apple Day and October events at Woodlands Farm 

    Apple Day 2016 Poster

    Apple Day, mammal surveys, bumble bee walks, new rare breed sheep and half term activities for children: busy times as usual at Woodlands Farm. The farm’s annual celebration of autumn fruitfulness, Apple Day, is next weekend on Sunday 16th October between 11am and 4pm. Maureen from the farm wrote with details:

    Apple Day
    Join us for a celebration of traditional British apples at Woodlands Farm, 331 Shooters Hill, DA16 3RP, on Sunday 16th October 2016, from 11am-4pm. Discover and buy many different types of traditional British apples. There will be a variety of activities including a treasure hunt, apple pressing to make delicious juice, stalls selling local produce, including our own honey and home-made jams, cakes and try some Kentish Cider. A great day out for all the family. Entry is free, but donations are welcome and go towards the running of the Farm. No parking on site. Please use public transport.

    I’m looking forward to trying some of the less common English apple varieties, such as Pitmaston Pineapples perhaps, and to stocking up on my favourite Egremont Russets. Maureen also sent me the photo below from a previous Apple Day.

    Apple Day at Woodlands Farm

    Apple Day at Woodlands Farm

    The farm has continued its surveys of the local flora and fauna through the summer, including bat surveys, wild flower surveys, bumble bee surveys and mammal surveys. The next mammal survey is this week: the Longworth traps will be set out on Tuesday afternoon, starting at 3pm, and collected the following morning, Wednesday 12th October,  at 9am. This year’s mammal surveys have been pretty fruitful, with wood mice, bank voles and common shrew found. On the most productive survey 10 out of the 15 traps deployed had something in.

    The bumble bee walk is held each month, the next one is this Thursday, 13th October starting at 2.00pm. Anyone interested in helping out with these surveys should contact Hannah Ricketts, the Farm’s Education Officer on education@thewoodlandsfarmtrust.org

     

    Wood Mouse caught in Woodlands Farm's Mammal Survey

    Wood Mouse caught in Woodlands Farm’s Mammal Survey

    Hannah also runs the half term activities for children at the farm, and sent me details of those running this month:

    October Half term activities for children
    Wednesday 26th October – Make an insect hotel
    1pm, 1.30pm, 2pm, 2.30pm.  £4 per child
    Come along and make an insect hotel for your garden.  This will be a fabulous place for the insects to hibernate during the winter.  Booking is essential, to book call 020 8319 8900
    Thursday 27th October- Autumn Art Day
    1-3pm, £2 per child
    Drop in for a fun afternoon of autumnal art!  Get crafty with leaves, paint or whatever you fancy!  As well as the rest of the art activities, there will also be a limited number of items to decorate for an additional £2.  No need to book, just drop in.
    Friday 28th October – Halloween trail and craft
    11am-3pm  £3 per child
    Drop in to join the fun as you go on a Halloween trail round the farmyard as well as having the chance to make your own spooky craft to take home.  Why not dress up as well to make the day an even creepier day out!  No need to book, just drop in.

    The farm’s new sheep are from a rare breed called Manx Loaghtan, which originate in the Isle of Man. They are characterised by brown wool and can have up to six horns, though the ewes at the farm only have two each.

    Manx Loaghtan at Woodlands Farm

    Manx Loaghtan sheep at Woodlands Farm

    Manx Loaghtan sheep at Woodlands Farm

    Manx Loaghtan sheep at Woodlands Farm

     
  • hilly 7:39 pm on August 22, 2016
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    Bat Walks at Woodlands Farm and Shrewsbury Park 

    Brown Long Eared bat from Jenny Clark’s education team at Batfest 2015

    Brown long-eared bat at Bat Fest

    Next weekend, 27/28 August, is International Bat Weekend, which is marked by batty events across the world. Locally both Woodlands Farm and the Friends of Shrewsbury Park are holding bat walks in the coming weeks, and London’s Bat Fest is being held over the weekend at Woodberry Wetlands in Hackney.

    There seem to be plenty of bats around this year. The NBMP field survey at Woodlands Farm in July detected quite a few pipistrelles and some noctules. Pipistrelles have also been detected at the Wide Horizons Constitution Rise woodland, Manor House Gardens, Hall Place and Hervey Road sports field. Even normally sterile Canning Town had more than its usual solitary pip in this year’s NBMP survey. However the waterways survey along the River Cray at Hall Place once again found no Daubenton’s bats.

    Woodlands Farm BatWalks 2016

    Woodlands Farm’s bat walks will be held on Wednesday 24th August and Thursday 1st September. Maureen from the farm wrote with details:

    Join us for our annual bat walks. Starting with a brief introduction to bats we will then go on a walk round the farm trying to see and hear bats using bat detectors. You will need sturdy footwear, suitable outdoor clothing and a torch. Children must be accompanied by an adult (not recommended for children under 6 years). £6 per adult, £4 per child (under 16 years). To book go to http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/the-woodlands-farm-trust-8448478250

    The Friends of Shrewsbury Park bat walk is on Friday 2nd September at 8.00pm. Kris sent me details:

    Meet in the car park for an introduction from bat-wise FSP members who will lead this adventure through the Park using our eyes, ears and bat detectors!
    The walk is free to members and £2 for non-members (but you can join on the night). Please wear appropriate shoes and clothing for the weather and paths. Children must be accompanied by an adult. And dogs must be kept on a lead.
    The walk lasts about 1 1/2 hours and a torch is useful.
    The car park may still be open but not at the end of the walk so remember to leave cars outside of the Park. If you have any mobility queries please contact us on fspdog@hotmail.com and we will help you participate.
    If it rains neither the bats nor us will be coming out!

    Let’s hope it stays dry for all the bat walks!

    Shrewsbury Park Bat walk poster 2016

     
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