Venturing Into The Brookly Wilderness

Cathy Holden writes:

The ‘Last of the Summer Wine’ team, an intrepid band of regular Friday morning conservation workers at the pond, chose to boldly go where no-one had boldly – or otherwise – gone for a very long time. The task was to clear the path running along the top end of the Brookly Stream, beyond the bridge.  As you can see from the photo below, it was a jungle out there!

Terry set-to with the strimmer while Geoff, Nick and Steve followed behind clearing the debris left in his wake.

Cathy and Mandy, suitably attired in waders, (no, there is no photo of us in the waders!) entered the stream itself at Brookly Bridge and carefully walked the path of the stream, clearing the overhanging branches, the odd dead pigeon and surprisingly a plastic false eye!  I say ‘carefully’ walked because it looks shallow, but has a tendency to hide pockets of mud to trap the wary wader. Eventually we all merged at the mouth of the stream, either in it, or on the bank and set-to trying to reach the dirty and unreadable gauge at the end of the path.

As this photo shows, it was all hands to the log to lay a path for Terry to get out and clean the mud from the gauge without him sinking up to his thighs.

This area of the pond is dangerous due to the very deep pockets of mud and silt which are easily seen in these photographs.  No-one should try to enter the pond at this point. You can see how shallow the water is by looking at these geese and swans.  However, do not be fooled, it may take their weight, but it will not take yours!

There used to be a grill across the Brookly Stream, almost at the mouth where it empties into the pond. The grill is no longer there, but in that area there was a real pile up of logs and stinking leaves. We cleared it all out so that the water could flow freely. The photo below looks back along the stream before the logs were cleared, they can just be seen in the distance in the centre of the stream.

After a good morning’s work the path and the stream were clear and we packed up and walked back along the newly cleared path.

This is the ‘after’ photo at the entrance to the path.

If you would like to join the ‘Last Of The Summer Wine’ team or would like further information, please look here.

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