Stratford Park, Stroud
Within the portfolio of The Landscape Group’s contracts, Stratford Park in Stroud is one of its smallest, but in many ways, one of its most prestigious. Within its 55 acres is a wealth of natural and man made habitats including an ornamental lake, arboretum, mixed woodland and other open spaces, and the Landscape Group is playing an active role in developing the park and its biodiversity.
Stratford Park’s supervisor (Mike McCrea) is an entomologist and ornithologist. Prior to taking on this role with the company, Mike spent many years studying the park’s birds and knew the park intimately. Since commencing the contract in November 2008, The Landscape Group has embarked on a series of initiatives with its client Stroud District Council to develop biodiversity at Stratford Park. This has included changing maintenance regimes to enhance and create new habitats for wildlife.
A nest box scheme was introduced in 2009 to increase nesting sites for hole-nesting birds such as Nuthatch, which had declined rapidly in recent years.
This has been a resounding success. Boxes were also erected for birds of prey, and during 2011 Little Owls bred
for the first time in many years. Also in 2009 Mike produced the first Stratford Park bird report which was funded by Stroud District Council. A butterfly and moth report followed in 2010. A monthly biodiversity newsletter produced by Mike, is circulated to those associated with the park and members of the public to inform them about the wildlife, events and developments.
This year has seen further developments in the park with the creation of a new dipping pond and butterfly garden, all carried out in-house by The Landscape Group’s staff. Developing the park and its biodiversity has created a very special relationship with the client, reflected by the 2 year contract extension awarded in November 2011. Mike and The Landscape Group staff integrate well with other organisations working in the park, particularly the Museum in the Park which is situated in the beautiful grounds.
Through the museum, Mike runs special events for the public including guided bird walks and moth events in the summer.
Students from the adjacent Stroud College have also been assisting with conservation work.
The rewards of this work has produced a prestigious BALI award in 2010, Green Flag status for 3 consecutive years, Britain in Bloom silver gilt 2011, In Bloom Gold in 2012 and 2 Stroud In Bloom Awards in 2012 for the second year running.
As a result of the conservation work carried out by TLG Stroud District Council has commissioned a 10 year biodiversity and landscape action plan for Stratford Park which will see The Landscape Group playing a major role in future years.
Stratford Park is a shining example of how working in harmony with the client to adopt sound environmental practices is not only beneficial to the biodiversity but also in sustaining good business relationships, and is a contract that will inspire others in The Landscape Group’s portfolio.
Please view our Biodiversity newsletters
Please also see the detailed bird survey carried out by our Contract Supervisor in 2009 at Stratford Park.
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