After two years of detailed preparation, enthusiastic teams of volunteers braved two crisp late autumn mornings last week to begin the regeneration of Rycote Meadow—the section of flood plain along the Cuttle Brook that’s separated from the Cuttle Brook Nature Reserve by Oxford Road.
Volunteers planted 700 hedge whips (about 120 metres of double-width hedge) along the side boundary of the meadow, and 29 mixed trees near its front and rear.
The tree planting is part of a broader Rycote Meadow project initiated by Thame Green Living on behalf of Thame Town Council, in collaboration with Cuttle Brook Conservation Volunteers. The new plants were generously funded by a grant from the Trust for Oxfordshire’s Environment. Mayor Paul Cowell officially supported the commencement of work on Sunday 21st November by planting a hedge section.
This fascinating project to promote biodiversity and protect a valuable nature corridor began with some ground tidying and preparation before selective planting. This had been preceded by an expert assessment of the wildlife, birds, and established plants already present in the meadow.
Ultimately the project will incorporate a pleasant footpath connection from Thame Meadows to the Town Centre, providing a tranquil location to enjoy the river and meadow location. The project will be phased over the next 24 months, during which time an access gate, ramp and path will be added.
The site won’t be open to the public until all the work is completed to ensure that this highly sensitive water meadow isn’t disturbed while it establishes itself. You can follow progress by watching from the roadside, by keeping an eye on our Rycote Meadow project page, or watching out for updates on Instagram and Facebook.
If you would like to get involved in this project, please get in touch.