Tuesday, 1 July 2014

SLM Weekly Digest 19-6-14

This is the Weekly Digest of Save Lea Marshes (SLM) - a campaign to keep the marshes of the Lea Valley and local green spaces, as natural as possible for wildlife and people to enjoy.  See our website www.saveleamarshes.org.uk for more information of our work and our fundraising merchandise.
What's been beating pulses, electronic and otherwise this week?
STRI - ANOTHER OWN GOAL -  one of our more sporty members spotted that the STRI (Sports Turf Research Institute), the people that we believe ruined Leyton Marsh, following causing problems at Wembley, were hired by the F.A. to pass the grass at Manaus for the World Cup Italy v. England match last weekend.  This doesn't mean exchanging a smoke, but saying the dry, brown turf was OK.  Also acknowledging that it is a known fact that grounds-men often paint grass green....
AIR APPARENT - also on Leyton Marsh this week, machines spotted aerating  the marsh to help offset the damage done by the "Sports Turf Ruination Institute"...
OFF-CUTS - discussion has continued about the mowing on Walthamstow SSSI.   SLM received some feedback from last Saturday's flower walk arranged by the Lee Valley Regional Park Authority, with Mark Spencer of the Natural History Museum, that there were disappointing signs of plants that were there when he last did a check of the land a few years ago, e.g. a lack of Creeping Marshwort. Mark also commented that it wasn't a good idea to leave grass clippings for the survival of certain species. 
COMPLAINTS - SLM members are  regularly pursuing complaints regarding things that we see as detrimental to  our green spaces - current issues being tackled are: the mowing of Walthamstow and Leyton Marshes, the 'temporary stable' outside the  Waterworks and parking and cars on Hackney and East Marshes.  We don't go into  details each week, but these are examples of the issues that we are following up on a  regular basis. 
HERBISIDE UPDATE - Hackney's Mayor Jules Pipe, sent a reply to  the petition on the use of Glysophate or "Roundup" in Hackney, fronted by Katherine Hammnet and others.  This was a lengthy reply (more lengthy than usual).  He  stands by the use of the chemicals and likens the use to the fact that we all live with diesel fumes ...  (To be continued ...). 
KIDS AND CHIPS - A group of school students were spotted this week doing  some more work on the edges of Hackney Marshes - where earlier this year , vegetation was cut back and lots of unnecessary pathways were cut through the wooded areas.
CROSSING - another SLM member is also questioning the addition of a hard pathway across Millfields along the Lea Bridge Road, next to the Princess, of Wales.  Was this  a breach of common land?  Investigations so far, point to the land not being part of the common land and the responsibility of  Hackney's Highways Department, but we await clarification.  
UNDER THE MEDIA RADAR - did you know that the so called Zombie Government was putting up a Bill yesterday to take away the power of local councils to make decisions on village greens and other green spaces, many under a brown-field site specification - this could  ease the way for more unwanted development and fracking ... we must check what happened in Parliament ...
Tomorrow (Friday), SLM's own landscape historian and activist , Katy Andrews, will be giving a talk on her 25 year (and on going) struggle to protect "the people's marshes of the Lea Valley".  The talk will start at 7.00 p.m. and take place at St. Augustine's Tower, St. John's Churchyard, off Mare Street, Hackney E8 1HR.  We do not have any idea of how long this talk will be!
Russell Miller of the Tree Musketeers has a busy weekend ahead.  Firstly, he will be doing the Solstice Bee Walk on Saturday 21 June at King Henry's Walk Garden, Hackney.  This costs £10 and needs to be booked viarsvp@khwgarden.org.uk or text to 07507201453 or see http://www.khwgarden.org.uk/events/146621bugs,html  and on Sunday he will be doing a free tree walk (7-9 p.m.) to celebrate the 125th anniversary of Clissold Park this is being done in association with Clissold Park Users Group, and Sustainable Hackney.
The Eastern Curve Garden - currently hosting the SLM "What I love about the Marshes" photo   exhibition - is having a Summer Food Taster Session with Hackney's Growing Communities tonight 4-8 p.m.; volunteers weekend, this weekend 2-9 p.m. and next Thursday, 25 June, will be holding the Sustainable Hackney AGM and Networking event from  7.00 p.m. - many of the Hackney "green and good" organisations will be represented.  Food and Bar.

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