Blue Flower

Grant: On 19 November 2021 at a site visit we were presented with a cheque for a Green Community Grant from Breckland Council for our project covering Wildlife, Cycling, Renewable Energy, Recycle & Re-Use. 

Wildlife: We installed Nest boxes for various birds, Butterflies, Lizards, Hedgehogs and Dormice with a nest box camera system. A Kingfisher nesting tunnel has been installed in the river bank. We have a bird table, feeders & food, and feeder cleaning kit. I bought feeders which come apart easily so we can keep them clean. We made a wildlife habitat and insect hotel. Bat boxes have been put in trees. This helps many At Risk wildlife species. See the Nest Box and Camera page for details, pictures and links to installations.

Cycling: We have a cycle rack, pumps, compressor, puncture repair kits and a cycle tool kit to encourage cycling to the mill. Cyclists often visit our open days and work parties and use the bike rack. A log splitter and battery chainsaw allows volunteers to cycle to the mill, as they no longer need to bring these tools from home.

Renewable Energy: Solar panels power: Illuminated shelves; mini fridge; USB sockets to charge phones and electric screwdriver; nest box cameras; inverter to charge power tools; Multimedia Screens to show our water wheel turning and the model mill which are only available on open days, so visitors at other times can see videos of them. On open days, screens show the restoration and history of the mill. The log store, log splitter & battery chainsaw provide logs from fallen trees for habitat piles and our woodburner stove, over 300 trees were planted making the use of fallen trees fully renewable. 

Recycle & Re-Use: Recycle bins for open days and work parties. Water butts for watering the garden, cleaning finds and filling our water tank were installed, we also bought a watering can. Tools & hardware bought with grant funds enabled us to make things from re-used materials such as a compost bay, large wildlife habitat, wall mounted habitat, small round table, large rectangular table, shelves for the shed, viewing panel for brick floor, sawing horse and small greenhouse. Firebricks from an old storage heater were used for rubble on the track to avoid getting stuck in winter. Water based wood treatment preserves old outdoor furniture.

Work: We put signs up on site to explain the project. A log store and battery chainsaw were assembled. The chainsaw is taken with us to deal with fallen branches, we cleared the public footpath several times when fallen trees blocked it. The log splitter and bird feeding station were assembled, we fitted a large display screen in the visitor centre.  A small display screen and strip lights were fitted in the new display room. Shelf lights were fitted to shelving racks to display finds discovered on site. We cleaned bird feeders with our feeder cleaning kit due to bird flu. We installed solar panels to power everything with armoured cable joining the buildings. We transferred bird food into new storage containers and put up hooks in the shed for garden tools.

Bats: We put up bat boxes at the mill and at The Maltings, we were already bat friendly with compost bay, Primroses, wildflowersnew trees and shrubs. The site has plenty of water, Hawthorn, Ivy, and hollow weeds for insects. Bats are known to roost in the tunnels.

Purchases: Local Men’s Sheds made Owl, Kestrel, HedgehogSparrow and Dove boxes and a bird table, many made from reclaimed wood. Display screens are British made from County Durham, our log store was made in Wisbech, many other items were bought from Amazon Smile, supporting British wildlife charities.

Completion: All grant funds are now spent. We clean out the Barn Owl and Great Tit boxes each season, birds have used them in the following years. We recently added two extra compost bins and extended the compost bay as it was overflowing. I held back a Kingfisher nest tunnel so it can be built into the river wall when its rebuilt, as this will be the ideal location.

Graham Bartlett,  Project Co-ordinator        

Interactive Plan     Site Activity    Nestboxes & Cameras     Wildflower Meadow    Volunteer     Grants    19/11/21 

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  19/11/21   Wildflower Meadow      Nestboxes & Cameras     Grants