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:
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.
Access to Colin's Paddock
8th Feb 2015
The view on the south side of Little Trees Hill, the highest point on the Gog Magog Hills, looking over towards Linton Water Tower and beyond, is quite splendid and rather special. So too is the ground lying beneath you as you stand there.
There is very little soil on this chalky hillside which makes it the ideal environment for chalk grassland and flowers to flourish, a habitat now very rare and one we have to nurture and cherish. Chalk grasslands have been in decline in the UK for the last 50 years. We have the opportunity to restore a truly wildlife rich habitat – up to 40 species of flowering plants can be found in one square metre of lowland calcareous grassland – it has even been called the European equivalent of the tropical rainforest. Along with a rich flora, butterflies and insects are returning to this south facing slope of Magog Down.
The previous heavy footfall across the top of the hill led the Governors to the decision to close the path, in order to allow the flora to recover. Additionally the area has been incorporated into a paddock, where sheep are grazed. This is the best management for chalk grassland.
Now that the flora is recovering, this paddock will be open for access [from later in February] but ONLY when there are no sheep grazing.
It will ALWAYS remain closed to dogs.
This is so that:
- the paddock remains clear of dog faeces - better for sheep grazing
- the grass growing there remains free of dog faeces so that the annual hay crop can be put to good use as animal fodder, rather than dumped, which has been the fate of that on the North Down
- the area remains one for quiet recreation and for young children to play on grass free of dogs faeces.
The paddock will have to be shut whenever sheep are expected to graze so PLEASE respect the notices on the gates. There will be no through route with entrance and exit by one OR other of the gates on Shepherds’s walk.
We appreciate your help and cooperation in keeping Magog Down a special place, particularly this rare hilltop.
(Who is Colin's Bank and Paddock named after? Find out on our Moths and Butterflies page.)
8th Feb 2015
Up until 2011 we produced a twice-yearly Newsletter, and you can still download copies of some of these here:
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.