Open Barnsbury Wood on the odd Saturday for 2 hours

Barnsbury WoodI have been opening Barnsbury Wood as a volunteer since I came to live here. This involves offering a couple of Saturday afternoons over the summer and, on those afternoons, opening the gate and letting visitors wander about while I sit on a camping chair and read my book. After two hours I check everyone’s gone, lock up and go home – feeling better for a few moments of peace.

The note below is a friendly request for volunteers, from the Nature Conservation Service. This scheme helps Barnsbury Wood maintain its status as a public nature conservation area. Please respond to the Nature Conservation Service directly.

Barnsbury Wood Volunteers wanted, to open the wood to the public on Saturdays 2-4 pm through the summer.

Barnsbury Wood, the beautiful little nature reserve on your doorstep (Crescent Street) is only open to the public on Tuesdays 2-4 pm. For a number of years we have been able to extend this to include Saturday afternoons in the summer. This is only possible with the time and commitment of local residents who volunteer to staff the Saturday opening.

If you are interested please contact us.

Louisa Roscoe
Nature Conservation Officer
020 7527 4383
078 2509 8503
Louisa.Roscoe@islington.gov.uk

Full induction provided for new volunteers, refresher for those who have volunteered before if they wish.

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Fill in the questionnaire to preserve the library

West library

Dear Boys and Girls,

Congratulations on the new library, because it isn’t just a library. It is a space ship that will take you to the farthest reaches of the Universe, a time machine that will take you to the far past and the far future, a teacher that knows more than any human being, a friend that will amuse you and console you—and most of all, a gateway, to a better and happier and more useful life.

Signed, ‘Isaac Asimov‘, 1971.

This was written in an effort to attract as many youngsters to the premises as possible. The original is posted on this excellent blog, Letters of Note.

Now Islington residents are being asked to fill in a questionnaire as part of a consultation on Islington libraries. Councils are closing libraries countrywide, at the moment, In order to save money. Thankfully, Islington Council has pledged not to close any libraries this year, but cost cutting will inevitably mean library closures or reduced library services at some point.

Islington Council will use the consultation to guide or justify decisions about which libraries/services will go. Therefore if we want to keep our libraries it is important that we each fill in this questionnaire to let our Council know how and when we use our libraries and how we see ourselves using them in the future.

Click here to fill in the form online, or pick up a hard copy from any library in Islington. The deadline for submission is 31 July. Allow around ten minutes to complete the form online; to move on through the questions click the ‘Next’ button at the bottom each page.

There will also be a public meeting  on 21 June at Finsbury Library at 7p.m. The map is below.

Birds in Barnsbury Wood

Julian Amey of Thornhill Crescent was part of the original co-operative that saved Barnsbury Wood from a plan to turn it into housing. He also knows a thing or two about birds. At my request, he wrote a list of the birds that he has seen and heard in Barnsbury Wood. Here it is for your interest, with pictures of birds and audio clips of bird song. The audio clips are all available (with many others) from Xeno-Canto and provided under a creative commons licence by Stuart Fisher and Patrik Åberg.

Barnsbury Wood is open all year round on Tuesdays from 2.00 to 4.00 p.m. and in the summer (from July to September) on Saturdays from 2.00 to 4.00 p.m.

Song thrush
Song ThrushCurrently frequenting Barnsbury Wood, for the first time that I can remember since we arrived in 1984 we have a song thrush which can be heard singing loudly with its distinctive clear ‘cheep cheep’ and then a trill. This is quite different from the more usual musical warbling of the blackbirds. I also saw the thrush in the upper branches of the lime tree this weekend; it is noticeable by its light brown plumage and speckled breast.

Chaffinch
ChaffinchWe had also two chaffinches over this weekend, and although I have occasionally seen them before, they now seem to be more frequent visitors. They have pink breasts and a white flash in their brown wings.


Dunnock
DunnockWe also now have resident dunnocks, which look rather like robins without the red breast and they forage in the undergrowth.


Wood Pigeon
Wood pigeon

Carrion Crow
Carrion crow

Magpie
Magpie

Jay
Jay

Jackdaw
Jackdaw

Greater spotted woodpecker
Greater spotted woodpecker

Blackbird
Blackbird

Robin
Robin

Wren
Wren

Goldfinch
goldfinch

Blue tit
Blue tit

Coal tit
Coal tit

Long tailed tit
Long tailed tit

Great tit
Great tit

Redwing
RedwingThis is a winter visitor.

See Barnsbury Square on Saturday 11 June

This message comes from the Friends of Barnsbury Square Gardens.

Barnsbury SquareBarnsbury Square will be open from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday 11 June as part of this year’s Open Squares Weekend (in association with the London Parks and Gardens Trust). See the new planting, meet a neighbour, grab a tea/coffee, bring a friend and maybe some cake if you’d like to!

Friends of Barnsbury Square Gardens
www.friendsofbarnsburysqgardens.com