The A259 Corridor
IMPROVING OUR ENVIRONMENT
Last year two public meetings including more than one hundred residents were organised by the Bosham Association. They drew many comments about improvements needed along the A259 corridor and to the residential roads north of it. One of the proposals was the renovation of the old field hedge along the A259 from the Swan roundabout to Highgrove Farm, particularly beside Broadbridge Drive and Penwarden Way.
Many of those present said that the hedges and verges are ill-maintained and that at crucial points there is no easy or safe way through to the bus stops, shops, Post Office and doctors’ surgery. This is especially true for those with small children and pushchairs or wheelchairs. There is great support for improvements from the Parish Council and WSCC. They are drawing up plans to establish two solid but porous pathways through the hedge at key points this year. In time these may link with a safer crossing over the main road.
The aim is also to improve this vital wildlife highway by clearing out old concrete posts and rusty wire; by laying some branches to create denser cover for birds and small mammals; by removing some decaying undergrowth to replace it with native plants that will offer winter berries and nuts for the birds and small mammals; and by infilling some gaps with flowering trees like crab apple, rowan, blackthorn, etc. to give us all an attractive display in Spring and food for bees and other insects.
There is also a plan to ensure the whole hedge is dense enough to protect us from the carcinogens in the dust thrown up by the increasing traffic and also from noise and light pollution from the road. It is planned to enhance the whole hedge with attractive and useful bushes such as dog rose, spindleberry, juniper, etc. The WSCC community volunteers are interested to help us with the heavy work on the hedge. This cannot be tackled until after the bird-nesting period, so their work would be scheduled for September, so please plan to join in.
This is not just a project for those of us north of the A259. This road is the first approach to all parts of the village so any enhancement is to the advantage of us all … especially if eventually we can look at improvements to the Swan roundabout. We hope that everyone who cares about Bosham will wish to be involved – with practical help, advice or with a donation. If the Highgrove development goes ahead, a major renovation like this will help us show the developers how they also can contribute to the environment by continuing the hedge along their frontage too.
So are you willing to help?
Unless we have volunteers – whether to plant bulbs and bushes, move branches, identify wild flowers or make tea for those who do, none of the money or WSCC volunteers will be forthcoming. Let’s prove our commitment to our community.
We should like to plan a family street party in the summer holidays to study plants, trees, birds, animals and insects with local children…and adults. Experts on each subject will be on hand; there will be competitions and a picnic to enjoy together. Tea and squash makers needed!!
Some people have already offered to buy a larger tree in memory of a loved one. Each will have a copper label with the donor’s name and the tree species on it. You may not have the strength or time to move earth or plant bulbs but perhaps you’d like to make a donation for trees or bulbs.
Spring bulbs and flowers catch everyone’s eye and gladden our hearts. The hope is to create a bank along each side of the bottom of the hedge to plant primroses and spring bulbs there and some summer wild flowers like foxgloves, oxeye daisies and red and white campion – food for the bees and our eyes. We could have a major planting festival in late September – what about a pig roast on Penwarden Way; a local celebrity to bless the endeavour; a skittle alley for fun or whatever you suggest?
If you have not already given us your name, address, email and ‘phone number, please let us know as soon as possible and especially if you can offer some help. Join in and let’s leave a mark on Bosham/Broadbridge that our children will still be enjoying in 50 years’ time.