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FOAF News

Attenborough’s Fields Update – July 2019

The horses were removed by Hertfordshire County council Rural Estates from Attenborough’s  fields last October, the main reason for this decision was to stop the over grazing that had been a problem for a number of years.

This is the first summer without grazing.  I realise many walkers miss the horses and their foals in the spring. However the benefits have been a fantastic display of grasses and wildflowers, I have noticed a number of flowers that have not established previously such as Pignut, Field Wood rush, Cuckoo Flower and huge amounts of birds foot trefoil.  Butterflies are more numerous too with large numbers of Meadow Brown , Ringlet, Common Blue and Large Skipper. Other recent highlights are a hunting kestrel looking for small mammals in the long grass something I have never seen in 20 years.

Herts County council are committed to maintaining the fields for people and biodiversity, and have committed to the production of a new management plan to steer future work. It is taking rather a long time and we are still awaiting the completion of the document.  An Initial introduction to the plan which we have seen stresses the importance of the veteran trees in the fields and the need to protect them. We also believe grazing will continue although livestock will only be present for part of the year. 

Friends of Attenborough’s Fields have worked with Rural estates at Herts county Council  for 25 years and have monthly work parties on the first Sunday of every month at 10am at our tool store at the entrance of Paddock Road allotments, if you are interested in learning about the fields,  their wildlife or management come along and ask questions- we will be there Sunday 7th July 2019, for more information ring Robert Hopkins on 01923 241002

www.attenboroughsfields.uk

4 comments on “FOAF News

  1. wendy Autumn
    1 July 2019

    What a smashing photo & interesting update. How wonderful to see those meadow flowers & butterflies.
    It would be lovely to see the return of a managed number of horses providing they had shelter, food & care.

  2. Gerry C
    1 July 2019

    Thank you so much for this information, Rob. I was wondering why the horses had gone. I have noticed many butterflies too and wondered about all the vegetation. Great news! Can’t make this Sunday but would certainly like to become more informed and involved. We are so lucky to have these beautiful fields on our doorstep, as many of us say to each other as we walk past each other. They really do bring joy. Keep up the good work, everyone. I shall keep an eye out for a kestrel or any other bird of prey! Gerry C

  3. Raphael S
    2 July 2019

    Thank you for the update as we have sorely missed the horses. Hopefully they can return..perhaps in a smaller number to prevent overgrazing!

  4. backingthefields
    2 July 2019

    I’m absolutely delighted that Herts county council are committed to retaining our lovely fields for the enjoyment of us locals, and any other country loving people.
    In these days when (particularly in Bushey and Oxhey) there are too many flats being built, we desperately need this little oasis of countryside.

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This entry was posted on 1 July 2019 by in All News, Local Events, Local News.