September marks the end of the “silly season” to an extent: kids are back to school and we settle into autumn, looking forward to Halloween and Bonfire Night (stay tuned for news from the Lakeside Bar!) and trying to avoid the Christmas marketing that begins in most supermarkets and shops. With the Park being less busy, we have the chance to focus on additional areas that are important to us. At the moment we are working on the Arboretum. This was installed almost twenty years ago by Mr. C. – Jack remembers planting some of the avenue lime trees with Mike when he worked on the grounds during the school holidays.
We are looking to continue Mr. C’s vision for the Arboretum – replacing perished trees and planting new trees in keeping with the themes of the different sections. We have designed an interactive map for the Arboretum, invited numerous experts including Stephen Bean who designed the Arboretum, and formed a “friends of the Arboretum” group to come up with ideas for investing in this wonderful natural collection. With the advice of these friends, we have already begun replanting some of the trees in the “gold bedroom” section and are looking at how to optimise the experience of the Arboretum e.g. through tree identification trails, guided walks, and improved access and signage.
The Arboretum is an ever-evolving gift for current and future generations (Mr C planted it less than five years before he passed). We have enjoyed watching its shape and colours morph throughout the seasons each year and seeing the different groups of trees change over the passage of many years. Pumpkin spice lattes are one autumn treat – but we are looking most forward to seeing the flaming reds, ambers, and yellows of the Arboretum leaves as they change.
Lake Rejuvenation Update
The lake restoration project kicked off this week and has been remarkably successful. With the assistance of volunteers and work crews, we’ve made significant progress in removing a substantial amount of lilies. This marks a significant stride towards returning the lake to its natural and pristine beauty. We’re very happy with the results of the work on the North Lake. As with any project, there is more work to be done and we’re off to a great start.
This is what has been dredged!
Friends of the Arboretum
September saw a few old friends return to the park. Stephen Bean, who designed the original plans for the Arboretum, explored the grounds with the team. Stephen has tremendous insight into the history of the landscape as well as information to assist with our ongoing rejuvenation projects.
Another friend of the Arboretum is John Killingbeck, an Arborist who provides a wealth of information about the botanical landscape. It has been a pleasure to catch up with both Stephen and John, and we are excited about the future of the grounds.
In October, we hope to assemble a team to support the future of the Arboretum. Made up of professionals across various industries, bringing skill sets such as ree Surgery, Woodland Management and garden design. Together, we can ponder and plan how we will continue to rejuvenate the Arboretum.
New Owners’ Dog Run
Following interest from owners (on behalf of their furry friends), we are looking into creating a customer-exclusive dog run in addition to the dog run outside the entrance to the Park.
Look forward to news about this in due course!