Friday, 13 February 2015



SLM Weekly Digest

Keep Our Marshes Open and Green!

This is the Weekly Digest of Save Lea Marshes an open group of local people formed in opposition to the Olympic Basketball Training Centre on Leyton Marshes and continuing to strive for the preservation and enhancement of green spaces on the marshes and fields of the Lea Valley and surrounding local environments.  To find out more about our work, carried out entirely on a voluntary basis, please see our

Items this week include:

Spotted on the river Lea by twitchers on Twitter - a reed bunting.

A POSITIVE MEETING – The new Green Spaces Manager for the Lea Valley Regional Park Authority, Alex Farris,  attended our meeting earlier this week.  We were pleased to find out that he has a nature conservation background and seemed to understand our concerns – though interestingly, he was under the impression that Leyton Marsh was always a recreation area made up largely of rye grass.  We disabused him of this notion, informing him of what the area was like before the Olympic Training Centre, and the botched-up re-turfing.  All in all, it was a positive meeting and we look forward to discussing some other matters in more detail at the forthcoming LVRPA Workshop on Sunday 22 February at 1pm at the Waterworks.

IN THE PRESS - Hackney Citizen February issue no.64 p.1 has two stories of particular interest:   Firstly, a march held to ‘reclaim the towpath’ – canal boat users, walkers and cyclists took part in a “reclaim the towpath”, following a spate of recent muggings along the River Lea and secondly a story about the London Wildlife Trust’s dredging of a layer of silt from Stoke Newington’s East Reservoir, to create a new wildlife habitat for the Woodberry Wetlands.

I don’t always look in “The Observer’s Tech Monthly pull out but last Sunday (8.2.15) had an article on p.5 by Nicola Davis concering a research project about bees and pollination.  If you want to take park in the volunteering experiments go to    On page 7 there are some interesting books mentioned including: “Climate Shock: The Economic Consequences of a Hotter Planet” by Gernot Wagner and Martin Weltzman , who consider what might happen if we don’t manage climate change and “House Guests, House Pests” by Richard Jones, on whether we should welcome wee beasties into our lives, such as bed bugs and woodworm.

PLOTS FOR TOTS - the results of the Millfields User Groups Millfields Park Survey are in and out of 336 replies,  over 91 per cent of users want to see play space in one or other of the suggested plots. To find out more go to


A walk is being organised:  “Get to Know the Lea Valley” on February 20th at 2.30 pm leaving from the Lea Valley Ice Rink on Lea Bridge Road.  Time?  About 90 minutes.  To sign up go to

The Eastern Curve Garden in Dalston will be having its first outside Pizza eating this year from the clay oven on Saturday from 2-6 pm.  Opening times for the garden space are generally 11-5 Sunday to Wednesday and until 6 pm. Thursday to Saturday, now that it is getting lighter in the evenings.  It is half-term week coming up from Tuesday 17 to Friday 20th and their will be a theme of birds, butterflies and bugs with art workshops.  If you are bee-minded, another project being organised off site at St. Peter’s Church, N1 4DA on Saturday 21 February from 2- 5 p.m. is a bee hotel building project with Alison Benjamin, co-author of “Bees in the City”, with children.

Also next weekend, there are still places available for the Permaculture and Diverse Communities Taster Day at The Mill on 21st February from 10am - 5pm. Facebook eventhere

Sustainable Hackney are preparing for the Climate Change march on March 7th.  There is a plan to meet at CLR James Library in Dalston Square, Hackney at 11.30am, hop on a bus (hopefully buses), and congregate in Lincoln’s Inn Fields at 12.45pm.  I did read earlier, but have lost the clipping, that there was some controversy over the Police refusing to close roads for the march, suggesting that organisations involved foot the bill – thus threatening another democratic right.  I’m sure we’ll hear more about this.

Next SLM meeting will be at the Princess of Wales pub on Lea Bridge Road at 7.30pm on Monday 23 February.  We can’t promise a star guest but we will offer a warm welcome to new attenders.

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