Out and about in August with our Wednesday volunteers

We have been working under our new regime for a month and it has been a busy time for all our volunteers catching up with the backlog of jobs across our sites.

We continue to work in our bubbles with more or less the same team of five volunteers on each of our workdays. I am a member of the Wednesday bubble working with Matt on a variety of projects at our sites. Paula leads the Friday bubble but also recently covered for Matt on a Wednesday and a Thursday when he was on holiday.

We are now settled into our bubbles and getting used to ensuring that we are self-sufficient on the refreshment front as well as other things. We are also doing our best to work within the distancing rules which can sometimes be challenging for those jobs which require three hands or more to get things done.

New bench installed and a revamped stile.

So, what have we been up to? During August, our Wednesday bubble visited Bowthorpe Southern Park, Ketts Park in Wymondham and we have spent a few days at Green Lanes, near Drayton.

At Bowthorpe we repaired a stile, built a new bench, and cut back the overgrown edges of a footpath there.

On our visit to Wymondham we moved many tonnes of hoggin from one place to another to top up the path through the woods. Fortunately, we had a half-tonne powered tipping barrow to do the carting, but it still required much effort to fill it at one end and then empty and rake it out at the other.

Over 4 days through scorching weather, 100 metres of pathway was laid down containing 25 tonnes of hoggin. Impressive.

At Drayton Green Lanes we are replacing sections of the boardwalk and a set of steps leading down towards the boardwalk. The site off Low Road between Hellesdon and Drayton is on a very steep wooded bank on the edge of the River Wensum. Our first task was to dismantle and remove a section of rotting boardwalk spanning a dyke which we will replace in the coming weeks. (In fact, it wasn’t very “mantled” when we started so it was more like picking up the bits)!

On our second visit we built a new set of steps to replace those that had been removed by the Thursday team the previous week. The steps are more akin to a stairway and are on a steep bank with lots of tree roots and difficult working conditions. Trying to maintain a foothold while handling heavy ten-foot lengths of plastic board was challenging but that is what we do. After much effort, the sides of the new steps and most of the treads were in position ready for the Thursday bubble to finish off.

As you can see from the steps, they were hanging on by a splinter! But the new ones, made from recycled plastic look way better.

We miss meeting up with our other fellow volunteers and working in our bubbles means that we have a limited view of the overall work of the Fringe Project. However, our Facebook page includes photos of what the other teams are up to on their days out and they seem to be as busy as we are!

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