Rectory Lane Cemetery’s contribution to the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch this weekend highlighted one of the main aims of the restoration project.
On Sunday 28 January, two dozen birdwatchers of all ages gathered at the top end of the cemetery to watch, identify and count birds. Kate Campbell, Community Engagement Officer for the planned transformation of the cemetery, said: ‘This will be a wildlife area, not mown so much, to attract wildlife and encourage wildflowers. The lower part of the cemetery, the first to be gifted to St Peter’s, is flatter and more formally laid out, and we plan to make that an activities and events area. The middle area will become a landscaped memorial garden in 2019.’
The birdwatchers were greeted by project volunteer Roy Adams, who talked them through what they might see and how to recognise the birds. As the RSPB’s designated hour opened the birds were shy, but feeders deployed by volunteers earlier in January began to attract small birds especially. The data uploaded to the RSPB afterwards reported seven types of bird, from colourful goldfinches (in sufficient numbers to constitute a ‘charm’) to an unassuming dunnock.
Keep an eye on our What’s On pages for future events at the cemetery. On 14 February there’s a Nesting Box special, and on 7 May the cemetery project will take part in International Dawn Chorus Day.
For more information on the Rectory Lane Cemetery Project, go to www.stpetersberkhamstedfriends.org.uk