Balsam Bashing – and other news

Balsam bashing

Join us for balsam bashing in July

Woking Biodiversity Partnership will be meeting for some ‘balsam bashing’ at Mayford Meadows local nature reserve to remove the highly invasive Himalayan Balsam on the 9th and 23rd of July.

Growing up to 2.5m high from seed in a single season, and projecting its seeds up to four metres Himalyan Balsam can spread quickly, particularly along waterways. But its success means that when left uncontrolled it can spread rapidly across sites, outcompeting native plants and causing damage to riverbanks as it dies back in the winter. Removing these plants in the summer season before the seeds have formed can help to manage the spread of these invasive plants, and help protect biodiversity.

Join us on the 9th and 23rd July from 10:00 – 13:00 at Mayford Meadows. Tea, coffee and biscuits will be provided.

On the 9th, we will be meeting at the entrance to the south end of the Meadows, located on the Guildford Road. The gate is next to the Mayford Arms (GU22 9QT).

Please note the meeting location for the 23rd July has now changed to near to the Barnsbury School (GU22 0BB). Turn off the A320 Egley Road on to Almond Avenue. Then turn right on to Willow Way. Park just after the junction with Laburnum Road. The path to the bridge over the Hoe Stream is opposite. Someone will be there at the path. Please email if you need further details.

It’s a good idea to wear long sleeves and long trousers as there are nettles in the area. Wellington boots or walking boots and gardening gloves are also advised.

We would love to see you! No experience necessary.

Do get in touch if you have any questions. So that we have an idea of numbers, if you would like to join us, please let us know by email:

Incredible Edible Woking

‘Incredible Edible’ is a community-based project started by a few local volunteers. We plant food crops – vegetables, fruit and herbs – in public spaces around Woking. Everyone can help to look after the plots and all are welcome to help themselves to the produce (when it is ripe). Kids are most welcome. We are regularly welcoming volunteers to help with planting and maintaining the plots. For more information check out the Incredible Edible page and follow Incredible Edible Woking on Facebook.

Natural Woking talks

Woking Borough Council is hosting two upcoming talks on conservation. There will be a Bat Conservation Talk, at 6.30pm on 31st May 2017 – Surrey Bat Group will be giving a talk covering the natural history of bats, the need for conservation, species distribution, recording and surveying. There will also be a Swift Conservation Talk, at 6.30pm on 26th July 2017 – Edward Mayer of Swift Conservation will explain how to enhance urban biodiversity, and in particular how we can reverse declines in swift populations.

Talks will be held in the Council Chamber at the council’s Civic Offices in Gloucester Square, Woking. Book a free ticket by emailing

Hilary Griffiths

It is with great sadness that we want to inform friends of LA21 that long-standing member Hilary Griffiths died on the 3rd of May, following a long battle with leukaemia. Hilary was a fantastic environmental champion, making a huge difference to LA21’s work with great passion, humour and enthusiasm. We will really miss her.

Her family is raising money for Friends of the Earth in her memory. If you would like to contribute you can do so on this Just Giving webpage.

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