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Gardens of Delight

The lockdown has had one big benefit for those of us lucky enough to have a garden. We’ve been able to spend more time there and, for many, it’s meant that we could get serious about helping our wildlife too. The results speak for themselves with details now available from the 2020 Wild About Gardens Awards. Cookham now has more than 100 gardens committed to making them a safe and healthy place for our birds, insects and mammals We are sorry we cannot hold our annual Awards event to congratulate them all, especially the many gardeners who achieved Gold status this year.

There are clear signs of progress in this year’s results. 97% of the gardens now boast nectar-rich flowers and the same percentage have a water butt, up from 78% last year. Interesting also to see the increase in gardens where bits of lawn have been left wild or where wild flowers have been encouraged – up from the low 40s to around 60%. This is so encouraging: please keep at it!

Elsewhere we have been busy making further improvements to our Harris Woodbridge Reserve and also getting down and dirty at the pond on Marsh Meadow, clearing surface weeds and other work.

Our regular walks are mostly on hold though we did get one for a small group when Brian Clews revealed the wonders of our local natural world. And we were delighted that Waltham Place ran an event in their amazing gardens in White Waltham. If you have never been there look out for details of future events: it’s a real treat.

If you’re an amateur film-maker we hope you are out there creating material for your entries for the WildCookham Film Festival, which will form part of next year’s Cookham Festival: see our website for details.

We are also looking at creating some volunteering opportunities for individuals, families and small groups through the winter. Do get in touch if you are interested – to Meanwhile please keep doing what you can to help our local wildlife through the winter months. Find us on Facebook and at

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