We have been reclaiming Cripley Meadow since the end of 2005. The photo shows one of our biggest problems ...rubbish! So far we have had to remove over £20,000 worth, some accumulated over 100 years of bringing on 'useful things' and some simply modern dumping and some the result of members using the site as cheap storage. We are now careful not to let waste accumulate so that our children's children do not have the same problem... but we try to encourage inventive recycling. Please remember an attractive, productive and cultivated plot/site is a healthy and safe plot/site.
Cripley Reclamation 2008
Reclamation Project 2009 saw us complete our Cripley Island Reclamation and establish a heritage orchard of about 100 trees. We were supported by Mid Counties Orchard group. Do look at the leaflets as this was an amazing project which required a huge amount of perststence. It initiated up most of our working practices to involve members and develop our community. Cripley Meadow was now firmly n a new track.We have let Plot 84 and 109 which are not suitable for cultivation have Arcadian Living as the member. They use it as a collection point for grass cuttings and hedge trimmings. They are members and are required to keep keep it cut and turned. Members can use the grass cuttings in their compost or as green mulch if they wish and they can take the rough compost when it has been turned and cooked! We expect that the gradual accumulation and of composted material ill raise the level of plots that are too low. Arcadian Living donate money to our site to help with road maintenance.
2010-2011 (See photo gallery)
2010 Application to OCC/National Lottery for Grant aid for Reclamation Project Disused ground (2009-2011) This project was delayed until 2010 by investigations which required contact with Natural England in managing the work with reference to the badger population. We had consulted the local badger group. We were cleared to do the work and advised that Oxford City Council would only need to make an application for a license to work if cause arose during work.
Shaun Gibson and James Dixon (horticultural manager) visited in April 2010 to advise re tree management. Shaun Gibson (tree officer) organised the tree marking and work will began July 2010. The area was strimmed first to provide access channels and then tree work started. The boundary willows were left until a later date.
2011 Reclaiming our South Field
In July we made a Lottery Application for funding to move the fence and complete hard landscaping or paths and an association shed on The south Field. In September we were awarded National Lottery funding for moving fence and Oxford University offered to complete with Badger fencing. They are building phase 2 Castle Mill and they have closed and moved a sett. Provision will be made for access in accordance with Natural England advice. We removed the rubbish, and laid the path and In October the trees were pollarded to let in light. The fence was moved and badger proofed with Oxford University funding in November. The South Field was opened on November 27th 2011. Almost all the plots were gone by the end of December.
2014 We applied for a National Lottery Awards for All grant to part fund a shredder, a new water butt on the South Field and Ground Cover. We were awarded 2,958.
2015 OU donated the Castle Mill Orchard comprising 100 mixed fruit trees with an esaplier run and completed work left unfinished by Longcross
OCC grant for build raised beds. 2015
OCC Orchard maintenance grants 2016
2016 We made an agreement with Oxford university to receive a large sum to install Badger fencing to west and south. This was a massive project which needed a full time manager as it involved a great deal of clearing willow (thanks to OUs tree team), moving tons of rubbish and moving and replacing sheds. We installed 15 x 1000L water butts as access to the stream is now more limited. We were very fortunate that Jeremy Hyde was available to mage the field work on a daily basis.