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Mendip Wildlife GardenMendip Wildlife Garden

Countryside

 

The garden was officially opened by the Mayor of Southend on 10th September 2011

There is an area of ground on the Mendip Estate in Southend which In the 1950's was kept mown and through to the 1960's children used to play on it, have parties and raced each other. Then as time went by it became neglected, and left to become over-grown.

Fly tippingAfter some time, residents were sent letters asking if they would like an extension to their gardens or allotments, allotments won the day.

It started to look really nice, and the residents worked hard, but then fly tippers came along and started to leave their rubbish, and the residents lost interest and gradually it returned to an over-grown waste land.

The Birth of a Garden

Then in 2009 the idea of the Wildlife Garden was born. The Mendip Residents Association started to clear the rubbish, dug up all the weeds, even burning some of the rubbish.

Security FencingLots of ideas were submitted by the residents, some of which have been included in the plans, i.e. security fencing, bird boxes and only being open from dawn to dusk.

For this project to go ahead £43k funding was required. The Association submitted funding applications and were very happy to secure £18k from Cory Environmental Trust and granted £13k from the Resident Led Project Panel.

Many organisations have and are supporting and advising the Association on this project, including the Landscape Officer of Southend Borough Council, Cory Environmental Trust, Resident Involvement Team at South Essex Homes, Essex Wildlife Trust, Essex Biodiversity Partnership, Healthy Life Essex and the Local Badgers Society to name just a few.

It has been confirmed that Badgers, rare Black Foxes, Slow Worms and Toads are among the numerous new residents living on this site, along with a recently discovered rare species of spider called 'Signature'.

Signature Spider Tadpoles Toad

The team have done wonders and the site has now been transformed from what was effectively a rubbish tip. With new trees, whip planting, the addition a pond and Picnic Tables, It is getting the feel of a nature garden and you can start to visualise where it is going and what it will be like as it matures.

Wild Flowers Picnic benches Wild flowers Wild flowers
The picnic area The Pond

INFORMATION

Location :
Entrance to garden is off :
Dunster Avenue,
Westcliff-on-Sea,
SS0 0HQ

Opening times :
Garden is generally open
7am to 7pm daily

Further information :
contact : cliff.garwood@strf.org.uk


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Acknowledgments
Photographs & layout by : Mike Wilson : Healthy Life Essex

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