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District Dispatch - 2 April 2024

If you have a garden then this time of year is always brimming with excitement, especially when you see the first daffodil blooms in all their glory. With spring fast approaching we'll hopefully be able to get outside a bit more and start preparing for warmer weather.

Councillor Adrian Moss, Leader of Chichester District Council

After a few hours tidying it can be a bit of a pain having to gather up all the heavy bags and taking them to the recycling centre. If this applies to you, then you may be interested to know that we offer a Garden Recycling Service.

This collection service provides a reliable, convenient, and cost-effective way of recycling your garden waste. By subscribing to the service, you'll benefit from reliable fortnightly collections of your garden waste including grass cuttings, leads, hedge trimmings, weeds, and small branches. Your garden waste will also be recycled by a local company which turns it into high quality, peat-free compost. More than 23,000 households are already using the service. If you'd like to find out more, then simply head to our Garden Recycling web pages to access more details and sign up.

Our dedicated team of volunteers at Bishop's Palace Gardens in Chichester are also busy in the garden at the moment. You may not be aware, but Chichester District Council leases the gardens from the Bishop, and we have cared for and maintained the gardens for many, many years.

Led by groundsman Charlie, who's been with our Parks and Gardens Team for over 25 years, the volunteers spend a few hours each week looking after this beautiful and very special place. The volunteers play such a crucial role and do an outstanding job, and I'm always amazed at how wonderful the gardens look every time I pass through.

The group can usually be found in their hi-vis vests working away on a Wednesday morning. If you see them, please say hello and find out more about what they do. And if you're interested in putting trowel to soil or doing a spot of weeding, then I'm sure they would welcome you with open arms - please do email parks@chichester.gov.uk to find out more about volunteering.

Another group that carries out amazing work, is the South Pond Group in Midhurst, which supports the district council in looking after South Pond. In February, we carried some out important dredging work to reduce the risk of flooding and ensure the water flows freely.

You might be interested to know that South Pond is fed by two streams which were once the boundaries of Saxon settlements. The streams join together and form the division between the oldest part of Midhurst and West Lavington. These areas once belonged to different lords, and South Pond was formed when one of the medieval lords of Midhurst dammed the streams to make a breeding pool for fish which included perch, bream, tench, roach and carp. 

The South Pond Group hold a regular programme of working days, and anyone is welcome to join. The next working day is on 13 April - volunteers meet at 9.30am at the end of the Grange Terrace and work until 12.30pm.

In July and August, the group also hold a free Moth identification morning and Bat Identification Evening using bat detectors. Both fantastic ways to learn more about the creatures living around the pond and how to identify them.

Again, if you're passing this lovely area on their working days please do stop and chat with them and they will be only too happy to talk to you about their work to look after this wonderful space. You can find out more about joining them on the South Pond Group website (opens new window) and they also produce a regular newsletter about their work.

 

Best Wishes

Adrian Moss

Leader of Chichester District Council