title="Pickmere Parish Council in Cheshire">

Nature And ConservationThu, 26th November 2020

Nature And Conservation

Pickmere Parish Council was gifted the IROS (Informal Recreational Open Space) and a small sum of money towards its maintenance by the Co-op bank in 1997 as part of  a legal agreement relating to the erection of houses on adjoining land.

The public are granted "access on foot during daylight hours" and the task of maintaining and improving the site both for wildlife habitats and for the quiet enjoyment of local residents remains with the Parish Council.  However the land is not "public" and remains in the ownership and control of the Parish Council.

The Parish Council does not allow craft , including canoes, kayaks, paddleboards, inflatable dinghies, etc. to be launched from its land.  It also does not permit persons to enter the water from its land to swim, paddle or play.  These policies reflect the inherent hazard of swimming/playing in open water - there is no lifeguard, and from time to time water skiing takes place with boats accessing the lake from other land ownerships on its shore.  Further, the lake water is not tested on a regular basis for cleanliness and purity.  Indeed there are frequently problems in summer months of toxic algal blooms.  Such algae can cause severe health problems to anyone, or any pet or other animal, entering the water or playing in it.

Since 1997 over 1000 trees have been planted but also diseased elms, crack willows and numerous alder and noxious weeds have had to be removed.  A former tip has been landscaped, footpaths have been upgraded and gates, seating, fencing and information boards have been installed.

We can only do this work at the rate we receive grant funding and secure volunteer help.  Most of the grants available have included a commitment to improving the wildlife habitat and awareness  - accordingly we have included a carved bench and interpretation boards.

More recently a barn owl carved from one of our own dead elms by local artist Angela Sidwell has been commissioned and installed.

Would anyone like to set up a wildlife board at the mere so that visitors can post their sightings of birds and animals?

Currently, Sale Moor Angling Club fish from the Parish Council banks.  Local residents wishing to fish can either become a member of SMAC or can purchase a day ticket.

The Parish Council  relies heavily on its volunteers and we are extremely grateful to all those who work hard to keep the IROS land a special place of enjoyment that we are all proud to have as a village amenity.  The Parish Council acknowledges the efforts of all these conscientious people, but we do appeal to you all to do your bit as well - please keep dogs under control and please remove all litter and dog poop bearing in mind this is an area where children love to play, toboggan and feed ducks.

We aim to maintain and improve the site for the enjoyment of the community. We are keen to encourage more people to become involved and to engender an understanding and appreciation of the rich variety of wildlife and flora we have here in Pickmere.  With varying degrees of success we have tried to encourage wild flowers to assist bees and pollination.  We still keep trying!

Above all - ENJOY!