Category Archives: Environment

Covid-19 May 2020

  • Covid-19: Our park is still open at the moment but no group community gardening is currently taking place.
  • If you use the Wildlife Area, please respect those who are seeking a quiet area, free from joggers and dogs.

STAY ALERT

Read the Prime Minister’s address for the latest information and this document for clarification about what you can and can’t do (correct at time of blogging).

  • Stay at home as much as possible but if you go out, stay 2 metres (6ft) away from other people at all times.
  • Work from home if you can.
  • Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds as soon as you get home & regularly thereafter.
  • Limit contact with other people.
  • You can spread the virus even if you don’t have symptoms.
  • You can remain infectious for a period after you seem to have recovered.
  • You may not be immune if you have had the virus. We are waiting for conclusive research.

Self-isolate if you or anyone in your household has symptoms.

Cover your face if you’re in enclosed places like the supermarket.

There are still many unknowns about this virus. Seek out the provenance of advice you hear or read. Try to stick to first hand, substantiated facts.

In line with the most recent government directives regarding the Coronavirus, we will review our plans with regard to community gardening when the appropriate stage is reached. Please watch for updates.

Whilst our activities could be regarded as the allowed, we do not want to risk endangering the health of our wonderful, dedicated band of long-standing volunteers and we must protect the lives of the NHS carers upon whom we depend by promoting, encouraging and exercising social-distancing.

We are doing what we can to control the spread of COVID-19 and we hope you will join us.

Luckily, our park has remained open but do not attempt to use the outdoor gym.

Stay safe. Go out if you must, but be careful and mindful of others.

More information is available from Queen’s Park Community Council’s webpage.  The official government pages, including all the press conference transcripts, are here.

Staying Safe Outside your Home (click).

Staying Alert and Safe (click).

The Westminster City Council’s Residents newsletter (subscribe here) is another great way to stay up-to-date with the latest news, offers and events. These updates used to be weekly but are much more frequent at the moment. For more regular updates on their services and activities, follow them on Twitter and Facebook.

More options are here.

The work of the Queen’s Park Gardens Community and Sports Hub is dear to our hearts. They are currently assisting the most vulnerable and shielded residents in our community with hot food (from supplies provided by The Felix Project and meals created by Ida) and care package support. If you feel you can contribute to the great work they are doing, please visit their Just Giving page to make a small donation (they’ll accept a large one too!).

Just Living

  • Covid-19: Our park is still open at the moment but no group community gardening is taking place.
  • If you use the Wildlife Area, please respect those who are seeking a quiet area, free from joggers and dogs. Read our notes here.
  • Stay at home
  • Only go outside for food, health reasons or work (if you can’t work from home).
  • If you go out, stay 2 metres (6ft) away from other people at all times.
  • Wash your hands for 20 seconds as soon as you get home.
  • Do not meet others, even friends or family.
  • You can spread the virus even if you don’t have symptoms.
  • You can remain infectious for a period after you seem to have recovered.
  • There are many unknowns about this virus. Seek out the provenance of advice and try to stick to substantiated facts.

Our park has so many treasures during April and May. The trees are enjoying their new leaves and blossoms. Wild flowers are blooming and birds are caring for their hungry chicks.

Be kind to your neighbours and community. We are all dealing with varied and difficult challenges.

Some familiar faces are doing remarkable things to keep everyone going.

The work of the Queen’s Park Gardens Community and Sports Hub is dear to our hearts. They are currently assisting the most vulnerable and shielded residents in our community with hot meals (from food provided by The Felix Project and meals created by Ida) and care package support. If you feel you can contribute to the great work they are doing, please visit their Just Giving page to make a small donation (they’ll accept a large one too!).

You might also like to investigate some of the uplifting personal tales being told by customers and staff on Ida’s Instagram account, a beloved restaurant in our community.

Bird Count Results

  • Covid-19: Our park is still open at the moment but no community gardening is taking place. If you use the Wildlife Area, please respect those who are seeking a quiet area, free from joggers and dogs. Read our notes here.

__________________________________________________________________

At the end of January, we joined in the nation’s Garden Birdwatch, counting the birds in our park with Andrew from the RSPB.

You can read more here.

The data has been crunched and once again, the sparrow has come out on top. Read more at the RSPB website.

How do these results compare to our count?

UK Bird QPG
1st House Sparrow 3rd
2nd Starling none
3rd Blue Tit Joint 5th
4th Woodpigeon 2nd
5th Blackbird 4th
6th Goldfinch Joint 6th
7th Great Tit Joint 5th
8th Robin Joint 5th
9th Long-tailed Tit none
10th Magpie Joint 6th
15th Feral Pigeon 1st
19th Wren Joint 6th
52nd ! Mistle Thrush Joint 6th

2020 Bird Count


We would like to thank Andrew Peel for his expert guidance during our count again this year. His knowledge and observational skills were invaluable.

Thank you to all the Friends who came along to help, too.

Blackbirds
Blue tits
Goldfinch
Great tit
House sparrows
Robin
10 Wood pigeons
37 Feral pigeons
1 Magpie
1 Wren
1 Mistle Thrush

The national count will be published in April.

We were also visited by a squirrel and saw a cormorant flying overhead.

Recycle Week 2019

It is Recycling Week again. Many of the people who read this page will live in Westminster, where our park is located*.  Every borough has slightly different recycling requirements but Westminster has it’s own particular issues related to the transient nature of a proportion of its occupants in the more central areas. The different wards of the borough cannot have tailor made routines for individual needs, so the council tries to make it easier for residents by providing mixed recycling  collections across the borough. Improvements and trials are happening on a weekly basis to address the changing habits of our communities.

It’s always handy to check their online guide if you are unsure about what to do with an item of rubbish and they have produced these helpful flyers too.


Fly tipping is a big problem in our area and whilst it is easy to get angry at people’s lack of consideration or even exploitation, some older members of the community or visitors from places who deal with rubbish differently, put certain items on the street in the genuine belief that the bin men will take them, like they used to many, many years ago!  There are a multitude of reasons why it is impractical to do that nowadays some of which are financially based out of consideration for most residents.

For instance, the vehicles that collect our black bags are not designed to crunch down larger items that may also contain toxic elements.  Furthermore, if those trucks fill up with larger items they have to return to base for emptying sooner than they should, which means additional journeys to collect the rest of the black bags in the streets, costing more time, fuel and vehicle wear & tear. It is for this reason they have a fleet of special vehicles for the big or specialist things but they do not think it is fair for everyone to pay for running these trucks, so they make a charge if there are bulky items to collect (book one here). So when you see fly tipping in your street, it is not only unsightly but the cost of removing it is impacting on your pocket – money that could be better spent elsewhere in the community.

If you are fed up to see items dumped on your street (or any issue that needs the council’s attention), the revamped reporting portal allows you to pinpoint the problem on a map and do so without bothering to log in. It is also available as an app for your phone (scroll down for the links).

Finally, if you have something you no longer need but might be useful to someone else, think about swapping it with friends or you can attend one of Westminster’s popular Give & Take events. Check the events portal here.

*Brent Recycling site.

Kensington and Chelsea site.

2019 Dog Show!

The festival would not be complete without Crissie and the Dog Show!
3rd August 2019 in the Dog Area by the Ilbert Street/Third Avenue entrance, Queen’s Park Gardens
Registration (Essential)  is at 11:30 am
Event Begins at 12 noon.
Categories:
Ms Diva – Mr Slick
Pup Idol
Best Senior
Best Rescue
Luv My Staffie
For other festival info, please see here.

Short Gardening Course

Yet another wonderful opportunity from our friends at HCGA, and free for all!

Suitable for beginners/would-be gardeners, including Ideas for indoor gardening, balconies and window boxes.

Dates and times:

6th June 10.30am to 12.30pm – Muck and Magic @ The Rose Garden QPG
13th June 10.30 to 12.30  – Houseplant Gardening @ The Beethoven Centre
20th June 2 to 4pm – Herbs and Hanging Baskets @ The Beethoven Centre
27th June 2 to 4pm – Gardening to Attract Wildlife @ The Rose Garden
4th July 2 to 4pm –  Annuals V Perennials @ The Rose Garden
11th July 2 to 4pm – Visit to Phoenix Farm, W12

Email info@nullhcga.org.uk for more details or to book a place.

Locations:
The Rose Garden is at the west side of Queen’s Park Gardens,  alongside Fourth Avenue.
The Beethoven Centre is at Third Ave, London W10 4JL
Phoenix Farm is in Bloemfontein Road, London W12 7DB

How Many Birds?

 

With great thanks to the vast knowledge of Andrew from the RSPB, we had a glorious bird count in the park for their Garden Birdwatch.

Our friends,  the Cheeky Rascals Child Minding Group were also counting in the Wildlife Area, where we began. The children were so energised and interested.

 

 

We were there for 11 mins & saw:
Blackbirds
Carrion Crows
Goldfinch
Great tit
Blue tits
House sparrows
Robin
Wood pigeons
1 Feral pigeons

 

We moved over to the Rose Garden for a more sustained session for the prescribed one hour, and this is the count submitted to the RSPB.

Blackbirds
Blue tits
Carrion Crows
Goldfinch
Great tit
15 House sparrows
Robin
Wood pigeons
8 Feral pigeons
1 Dunnock
1 Coal tit
1 Chaffinch
1 Common Gull
1 Grey Heron (flying overhead)

 

Why not consider becoming a member of the RSPB to support all the great work they do and learn much more?  Andrew came to us from the Central London group who hold a variety of meetings and talks.

 

 

These were our results last year.