Improvements to Pembroke Lodge Entrance and Car Park
Pembroke Lodge Entrance and Car Park is undergoing refurbishment for approximately 10 weeks. The entrance will be improved to help with the heavy use by pedestrians and cyclists.
By upgrading the materials and increasing the pedestrian/cycling area, we hope that there will be more circulation space for everyone. The benches and cycle racks will be relocated, and additional drainage installed. Accessible, surfaced parking spaces for disabled users will be located opposite the entrance.
There will be some disruption and the car park is reduced in size until the work completed, but we trust that the need to carry out these essential improvements is appreciated. Pembroke Lodge, the kiosk and visitor centre are open as usual.
Following the silt and invasive plant removal from the two ponds near Ham Gate, contractors will be constructing head walls and sluices to both ponds. This will allow the water levels to be easily lowered so that any residual invasive plants can be controlled.
Horse Ride Reconstruction
Providing the ground conditions allow, the horse ride from Robin Hood Gate to Martin's Pond is due to commence in mid February. The work will also ensure that water flowing from Broomfield hill is directed into the ditch and new pond. This should keep the pond water level higher for a greater part of the year and reduce erosion on the horse track.
The forestry contractor is due to finish this year's Rhododendron ponticum clearance by mid February. This completes the third year of this essential woodland restoration work.
Volunteers from the Friends of Richmond Park and the Richmond Environmental Network will be planting young trees in the cleared areas.
The trees being native shrub-forming species will improve the woodland for wildlife once fully grown.
Jackdaws are one of the most numerous birds in the park. They are the smallest of the British crow family and easy to recognise with their pale eyes and silvery sheen on the back of the head on their otherwise totally black bodies.
Stand beneath a large flock of jackdaws on a wintery day and they create a gothic melancholy atmosphere. It is otherwise easy to overlook the jackdaw but they have an interesting social life. They are known to pair up for life and even within a large flock, pairs can be seen. Occasionally when a flock roost in a tree the pairs are all obvious.
Although intelligent birds, their gregarious and noisy character is referred to in popular culture. An old adage "The Swan will sing when the Jackdaw is silent" refers to wise people speaking only when fools have become silent.