Channelsea Conservation

Walk and talk with Nick Bertrand

Sat 3 Jun 2023

What an amazing and informative morning we had with conservationist Nick Bertrand from the Creekside Discovery Centre. Our time at the Long Wall Ecology Garden was truly inspiring as we immersed ourselves in the captivating world of wild flora.

It’s remarkable to see how this site, amidst the urban challenges of upheaval and concrete, has undergone a regenerative process over the years, resulting in a bountiful collection of wild plants.

Nick shared valuable insights with us, emphasizing the importance of observation before taking action.

We discovered that getting to know the unique personalities of the species we encounter and observing their behaviors across different seasons and years helps us make informed decisions.

By selectively cutting back and removing certain plants, we create space for less dominant species to thrive, bringing about a beautiful and diverse habitat.

This event was part of ‘Channelsea Community Composting’, a new project
that will give us invaluable support and guidance from Nick over the coming year
to identify the species in the area that will benefit from careful management to
ensure a biodiverse eco-system can thrive.

This year’s theme focuses on climate-resilient rivers and how river restoration can reduce the impact of the climate emergency on both people and wildlife, through restoring habitats and reducing the impacts of drought and flood.

The event was part of Thames 21’s ‘London River’s Week‘, a week-long annual campaign inspiring the public to celebrate all of London’s rivers and the many projects taking place to protect them.

This year we will also be building a composting system on land and a raft for the boat to enable us to begin tackling the pennywort problem on the river, composting this on land to provide nourishment for the community orchard.

You can join us via our monthly ecology gatherings, where we are establishing a regular group to care for the river and the land, and this project is part of the expansive learning journey we are going on together: identifying the best ways to be of service to the environment. Working collectively builds resilience and establishes bonds that move beyond each other into the wider world and the landscape itself. This deep learning experience will create long-lasting connections by enriching our understanding of the environment we share with the more-than-human communities also making their home there. Witnessing how these species interrelate and how our relationships with them can help this wild place to thrive, is a key objective. We aspire to understand our place as human participants within an urban wilderness, as we learn the importance of respecting the agency of wild plants and creating the conditions for them to flourish.


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