Turf Hill Park fire damage not as bad as feared

For my daily excercise I visited Brentmoor Heath and Turf Hill Park to check on the heathland fire damage.

Good news to report. The fire damage is not as significant as might have been feared by those who witnessed the flames and palls of smoke. The firefighters did a splendid job in controlling the extent of the fire, aided by the number of wide paths through the park, working as a fire break. Large parts of the park have been untouched by the fire.

The fire on Turf Hill Park jumped over Red Road and set Brentmoor Heath alight. Prompt action by the fire crews controlled both fires. Here are photos I took yesterday afternoon, with the fire crews from Surrey Heath patrolling to check on possible hot spots.

A Foosh is limiting my blogging

What is a Foosh? It’s the medical shorthand for a Fall on an Outstreched Hand. In my case the fall resulted in broken bones in my wrist.

Most reactions are, firstly sympathy, and then silly boy. I know you’ll be curious as to how it happened. This where the silly boy becomes true. Standing of on the lower step of a badly positioned step ladder, and reaching for Christmas decorations on the top shelf in our garage the ladder went one way and me the other. Result broken bones in my wrist.

One finger typing is annoying, so have been enjoying walks in and around home. Here’s a group of images from my walks.

Re the detention pond. I met a local parish councillor on one walk, and she told me that the inlet and outlet of the detention pond are blockage free, it’s just that the ground is saturated meaning the water takes time to drain away.

Finding the fifth bronze-age bowl barrow remains elusive

Yesterday in the fine sunny weather, and carrying a copy of the 1930’s aerial photo of the bronze-age bowl barrows in Brentmoor Heath, I ventured out to find the elusive fifth bowl barrow.

The photo, below, of the bowl barrows clearly shows the group of four bowl barrows. Less clear is the smaller bowl barrow, indistinct it might be, is the small circular barrow, which can be seen just to the right of the larger barrows. Below this photo is what I discovered.

I tramped around the heathland looking for evidence of the fifth barrow. Not having exact measurements of its location it was always going to be difficult to locate, and so it proved.

I think I found the likely location, although there was no obvious evidence, just an intelligent guess on my part from holding the photo in my hand, and judging where it might be in relation to the other barrows.

Here are two photos of what I found. The first photo looks back the the four barrows – the information board can be seen in the distance. The guess of the location is directly behind the tree at the right in the photo. The second photo is my guess of the location of the fifth barrow. My walking pole can be seen in the background to give a sense of scale. [click on photos to expand]

Looking for the fifth bronze-age bowl barrow in Brentmoor Heath

The four 4000 year old bowl barrows in Brentmoor Heath are easily accessible as a path runs next to them. In the 1930’s photo below – notice the lack of trees – you can just about pick out the fifth bowl barrow.  It is smaller and lies close by to the right of the four bowl barrows.

I’ve long been fascinated by them, and a while back wrote about them in some detail in Accepting the challenge to discover more about the bowl barrows in Brentmoor Heath.

I’ve not located the fith bowl barrow. As part of the need to get out, away from the TV, caused by my addiction to the Tour de France, I’m off to hunt for it.

Brentmoor Heath bowl barrow information board returns

In the summer this year I wrote about ‘Is decay the natural order of things’.  The article was about the missing information boards in Brentmoor Heath, notably the one by the four bronze-age bowl barrows.

Visiting the heath yesterday I noticed that the information board had returned.

There was no change to the description of the nearby sarsen stone’s presumed tool marks when it was dug out of the heathland. Eminent commenter, Speedicus Triplicatum HERE, is circumspect on the markings, considering them likely to be from the JCB’s bucket that moved the stone to this location.

Here are two photos of the stone. One on the left is from 2009, and on the right from yesterday. Click on images to expand

Is decay the natural order of things?

This reason I ask, if decay is the natural order of things, is that on a recent heathland walk I noticed that the information boards for Sapper Pond and the Bronze-Age Bowl Barrows, in Brentmoor Heath, have gone missing.

Looking on the situation kindly it could be that they’re being updated and will be replaced by Surrey Wildlife Trust. Let’s hope so.

Below are the photos of the information boards now missing, a photo of the posts by the bowl barrows, and a photo on Sapper Pond.

I’ve discovered quite a bit about the bronze-age bowl barrows, and should you want to know more about them, see my article – Accepting the challenge to discover more about the bowl barrows in Brentmoor Heath.


Ranger’s notes for autumn on Brentmoor Heath and Folly Bog

Two things to report from my walk in our local heathland this week.

The Surrey Wildlife Trust Ranger for Brentmoor Heath and Folly Bog has provided notes on autumn in the heathland, in which it states that Belted Galloway Cattle have returned to munch invasive plants.

Below are my photos of the Rangers’s notes, posted on the kissing gates into the heathland, and the cattle munching purple moor grass. [Click on photos to expand]

Surrey Wildlife Trust ranger spring update for Brentmoor Heath and Folly Bog

The entrances to the heathland off Red Road, and into Brentmoor Heath display a Spring update notice from Ben Habgood, the Surrey Wildlife Trust ranger for Brentmoor Heath and Folly Bog. He can be contacted at info@surreywt.org.uk

In Ben’s Spring update notice he mentions to be on the lookout for orchids, which he says can be seen from mid-May onwards. I walked on the track alongside Folly Bog yesterday and found no evidence of their arrival. But then I’m no botanist. I’ll make a trip down to Folly Bog and see I can spot signs of the Early Marsh Orchid.

I think nature is a bit late this year. Our large camellia has only recently ended its flowering. In the past it’s finished its flowering in January.  [Click on the image to expand].