The Noak Bridge
Nature Reserve Society
20th Anniversary - 1999 to 2019
Newsletter - Autumn 2019
The Annual General MeetingThis year's Annual General Meeting was held in the Village Hall, on Sunday 14th July. There were 17 members present to hear reports for the past year and some discussion and refreshments.
At the meeting David Braithwaite stood down as Chairman (as he had previously announced) and no new Chairman was elected then. At the September Committee Meeting Ray Batty was re-elected to the Committee as Chairman.
Around the Reserve with the ChairmanHello. After a break of two years I am happy to be back as the Chairman of this Society helping to look after and maintain the Reserve for everyone who visits whether to take a relaxing stroll or to relax on one of the seats dotted around the Reserve. However the disappointing thing is the anti-social behaviour taking place in the Reserve at times as with the recent destruction of a handrail on the straight / Spanish steps and the uprooting of one of our Queen's celebration benches from the main meadow. One evening, coming to the end of the dry period, a group of youngsters were found lighting a small fire within the undergrowth. Fortunately the fire was quickly extinguished but one wonders just what the outcome could have been if the fire had been able to take hold.
On a lighter note the reserve is generally looking good. This is thanks to the dedication of our small group of volunteers led by our Ranger Mark, who give up their free time once a month on a Tuesday afternoon to maintain the area, litter picking and carrying out odd jobs and repairs where necessary.
As a committee we do rely once again on volunteers to help, as committee members or as officers, and we have a vacancy for a "Secretary". This position is not as difficult as it may sound. All you need is a PC/Laptop and a little time, over the year usually four Sunday mornings for approximately two/three hours for Committee Meetings and one Sunday afternoon for approximately two/three hours for the AGM. If you are interested in helping us on this very worthwhile cause please contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
5th NOVEMBERFireworks night may seem a long way off but it really is just around the corner. The word Pyrotechnics comes from a Greek word for the art of making fire. Different elements are used to make the colours, sodium salts for one give golden effects, lithium gives red colours and copper gives blue flames and so on.
The earliest recorded use of gunpowder to make loud bangs and a flash of light was by medieval monks in around 1242. Tudors loved fireworks and there was a great display at the wedding of Henry Vll and Elizabeth of York in 1486. The first Globe theatre was burnt down in 1613 when Shakespeare's workers experimented with pyrotechnics to put on a show with special effects. Another event that went catastrophically wrong was in 1572 when a mock battle was staged for Elizabeth l with fireworks shot from cannons into the sky. Unfortunately a volley of misdirected fireballs fell on a local town which resulted in several houses being burned to the ground. Hence the saying "Don't take your eye off the (fire) ball".
Guy Fawkes's failed attempt to assassinate King James I and blow up the House of Lords in 1605 is the reason we continue to light bonfires on 5th November and burn the guy.
It seems like a modern trend to have rockets firing off in time to music but it was George ll who commissioned George Frideric Handel to create music to accompany the fireworks in Green Park in 1749.
Bonfire night with fireworks can be fun, but it's important to stay safe.
This article was researched by Tina Steggles
On the Work Party with the Treasurer - January to SeptemberThis is the first report this year due to pressure of other articles.
Early in the year there was a lot of mechanical flailing to clear the branches of bushes and trees close to paths and the boardwalk, and this was cleared away by volunteers. It looked crude for a while but fresh growth soon made it look good again.
Rubbish was cleared along one side of the reserve near the fences of back gardens, as well as general rubbish around the site.
Some minor repairs have been carried out on both sets of steps, but serious vandalism left one complete handrail so badly damaged that it had to be removed for safety. Information notices and posts have been replaced where vandals have removed them.
Strimming grass around benches and trimming bushes alongside paths has been done throughout the year.
There are photos taken during Work Parties and activity reports on our Facebook page.