Fleet Pond Society

Chairman’s Views

Please note in your diaries that Saturday 20th February is our Annual General Meeting, which will be held at SS Philip & James Church Hall, Kings Road, Fleet, at 7.15 p.m.  This is your chance to hear all about our activities, ask questions and raise any concerns you have about Fleet Pond.  We plan to show you the latest Video of activities.   The evening will feature all the entries to the Photograph Competition and the winner will be announced.   We have a nominee for Hart Chairman’s Volunteer of the Year Award and hope Chairman of the Council will be available to join us to present the award.

On 18th April 2016 the Society will celebrate 40 years with a dinner at El Castello’s restaurant in Fleet. Please join us.    To reserve a place at £20 per person, please contact our Treasurer, Nick Keeley, n.keeley@ntlworld.com or 01252 676385.  Cheques can be sent to Nick at 12, Chestnut Grove, Fleet, GU51 3LW. Meet at the restaurant at 7.00 p.m. for a 7.30 start. See the news page on this site for full details, including menu.

This will be followed with an exhibition of 40 years of Fleet Pond Society in Hart Shopping Centre, Fleet, Thursday 28th to Saturday 30th April.  Lots of photos through the ages and activities for children.

Our first task of 2016 was to clear some of the birch saplings from the dry heath and coppice some of the thicker gorse shrubs.   Gorse provides a safe nesting site for many small birds.   Long-tailed Tits are particularly attracted to these shrubs.  They build their nests of moss and lichen bonded together with spider webs.  As usual our volunteers assembled at the Countryside Workshop, Old Pump House Close, Fleet, GU51 3DA at 9.00 a.m.   If you wish to join a task you will need to book your place with the Countryside Ranger and further details can be found at Conservation Tasks page.  Nick Macfarlane is now the ranger with special interest in Fleet Pond.

Visitors may have noticed that there is still a large number of fish gathering in The Flash pool, where the pond dipping platform is located.  We need to remove some of the reeds from this pool as the fish hide there when we try to net them to transfer them back into the main pond.  For more details see the Hart Countryside Services Facebook page

The volunteer team, the Last of the Summer Wine, worked in double quick time and replaced the bridge at the Guildford Road entrance to the Reserve.  It is now open.  Well done team!

Mandy has successfully completed her walk for our Clearwater Campaign. She managed extremely well given the heat and humidity. There is still time for you to recognise this achievement by sending some sponsorship funds. Please go to  Mandy’s Fundraising Page for further details and some pictures of Mandy in her tropical hiking gear. Further photographs can be found in Mandy’s Sponsorship photos under Photographs.

Fleet Pond Society, in cooperation with Hart Countryside Service and John s Associates Ltd., has applied to Thames Water for funds to construct a new settlement pond to the rear of the Avondale Road Pumping Station.  The objective is to arrest any sewage escape from the Pumping Station before it can enter Brookly Stream and be carried into Fleet Pond.  The new pond will be isolated from the four small ponds in Brookly Wood to ensure no sewage escape reaches these ponds or the gardens of Avondale Road or Chestnut Grove.   Thames Water will remove any sewage in the pond should an escape occur.  The small Brookly Wood ponds will drain into the new Brookly Pond constructed last year via a pipe which will be laid under the footpath.   If the application is successful, work should start in March 2016.   

 

Colin

About the Fleet Pond Society

Fleet Pond Society (FPS) is the voluntary group that exists to protect and manage Fleet Pond Nature Reserve.  From our birth on 28th April 1976 up to the formation of the Hart Countryside Service in 1994, virtually all management was by volunteers under FPS guidance.

Our readiness to seek advice and expert guidance on the conservation management of a Site of Special Scientific Interest earned us the respect of Natural England, the controlling body for important wildlife sites. Today we work in a close and positive relationship with the Hart District Council Countryside Rangers to ensure best use is made of the voluntary resources FPS can provide.

Our volunteers work to maintain the diversity of wildlife habitat at the Reserve. This includes keeping the open heath and marsh areas free of invasive species; clearing footpaths of overhanging vegetation; repairing fences and strengthening the banks of streams against erosion.

Some of our donation and sponsorship funds have provided new facilities for the public, including a pond dipping platform, bench seats along footpaths and the popular viewing area, ‘Lions’ View’, on the eastern side of the Pond.

The Society relies for its income on a healthy membership that supports it through an annual subscription.  Local people and organisations have made donations recognising the value of Fleet Pond as a safe haven for wildlife and a valuable community amenity for visitors from Fleet and the adjacent towns.

FPS has also benefited from money raised through sponsored walks and cycle rides. Fleet Carnival Committee, Fleet Morning Townswomen’s Guild, Neale Turk LLP and Fleet Lions Club are some recent examples of organisations sponsoring specific projects.

To learn how you can help Fleet Pond Society go to the following pages:

Join Us

Become Corporate Members

Through volunteering with Conservation Tasks

Donating

Sponsorship

Raising Money