Annual Reviews

Each year we now produce an 'Annual Review' for Friends and Members, which incorporates a summary of our formal Year-end Report, plus what we hope are some interesting highlights of the year in question.

The previous few Annual Reviews can be downloaded here:

2018 Annual Review

2017 Annual Review

2016 Annual Review

2015 Annual Review

2014 Annual Review

2013 Annual Review

Members and Friends are sent these annual reviews as soon as they are produced each summer, and have an opportunity to attend our AGM each October and raise any issues.

If you would like to become a Friend, you can read more on our Join Us page, and then complete the application form.

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News from the Down prev  :  next

Managing the perimeter path and hedgerow for walkers and wildlife

dog_walk_238An important part of the funding for the Magog Down comes from our Stewardship Scheme grant which is financed by DEFRA.  An agreement is made with the land owner that in order to receive annual payments, maintenance works prescribed by Natural England will be carried out for the benefit of wildlife and public access.  Two important elements of management are the hedgerows and footpaths.  If managed appropriately, they can complement each other and make a more pleasant environment for the walker and a valuable habitat for wildlife. However, if managed inappropriately they can be completely devoid of wildlife and a nuisance to users.

The perimeter path around the Magog Down is very heavily used and is becoming increasingly eroded to the point where it is almost always muddy except during the summer. The quantity of snow which has fallen this year has not helped.  We are now going to start spreading a layer of woodchips in order to provide a more pleasant surface on which to walk.  However, due to the cost, £4,500 in 2009, we will not be using contractors, but will instead carry out the work on the monthly volunteer days.


The process

  1. Hedge – cut on rotation over 5-10 year period in blocks and never all sides at once. Provides food and shelter for wildlife.
  2. Vegetation alongside the hedge cut on rotation over 2-3 years in blocks in order to create variation in length but prevent scrub encroachment. Provides cover for birds, mammals and invertebrates. Long grass is ideal for overwintering insects, especially certain butterflies, caterpillars and the eggs of some species.
  3. Footpath kept close to the fence with a thin layer of woodchips, topped up regularly and vegetation kept short on either side.
  4. Vegetation against inner fence line cut back annually at the end of the growing season.
  5. Vegetation on other side of fence cut in blocks on 3-4 year rotation to create mosaic of vegetation types and lengths but preventing scrub encroachment. An important refuge for wildlife.

August 2011

Old Newsletters

Up until 2011 we produced a twice-yearly Newsletter, and you can still download copies of some of these here:

pdf_logo_smallSpring/Summer 2011

pdf_logo_smallAutumn/Winter 2010

Spring 2010

Autumn/Winter 2009

Spring 2009

In 2011 the re-designed website was launched, and so the decision was taken to stop producing these Newsletters, and instead to use this website as the main means of communication for news and articles of interest.

This move away from a regular Newsletter meant that more of the Members' and Friends' subscriptions could be spent directly on the costs of upkeep and husbandry on the Down.

We would love every regular visitor to Magog Down to help support its upkeep by becoming a Friend. Read more on our Join Us page, and then complete the application form.