July 2020 Newsletter  

Two ways to help our finances: hope to win yourself £25,000 or buy a bit of Noakes Grove. Click to find our more

Wednesday Wild Kids

The number of family groups enjoying their visits  to Noakes Grove has increased a lot during lockdown but our organised children's events had to stop. Under the current rules, up to six people (related or not) can meet in the open air. We decided to try out a "Wild Child Club" with five children aged 6-9 and one adult making up the six.

When we sent out the news of the club (for children of Friends or Shareholders) one evening, it was over-subscribed in less than two hours.

The lucky first five have so far had two Wednesday afternoon sessions and seem to be really enjoying them.

We are working hard to find a way of running at least one more group on a different day. There are enough children on the waiting list for one new group but if you would like your youngster added to the list email david@organic-countryside.co.uk


Each child took home a couple of tadpoles. A week later some had started to become frogs. photo: Hannah's Mum


The five Wednesday Wild Children are Alara (6), Anthony (6), Thomas (7), Mattia (8) and Hannah (9). Here's a letter from Hannah:


Lockdown for Sheep

Sheep can't catch the corona virus but some of ours got running noses and started coughing a bit. The vet diagnosed sheep flu, which is quite infectious to other sheep. Ours are getting some treatment and the lambs a vaccination.

Meanwhile, we can't move sheep from one of our reserves to another. The four old ladies in a very large pasture at Kings Field are coughing. The thirteen ewes and lambs at Noakes Grove have over-grazed their pastures but we can't move them to eat the plentiful grass at Kings Field.

Let's hope our sheep-lockdown ends sooner than is likely for us humans.

feeding time

Marbled Whites

One of the prettiest butterflies at Noakes Grove (and there are quite of lot of them) is the Marbled White. It is only a few years since Marbled Whites recolonised the Saffron Walden area and they are now doing really well in any bit of open countryside that isn't intensively farmed.

The butterfly news is really quite encouraging: since 1997 (when The Butterflies of Essex was written) Purple Emperors, Silver-washed Fritillaries and White Admirals came back after many decades absence. Only the Wall has been lost to our area in the last couple of decades.

There were lots of Peacock caterpillars on the Noakes Grove nettle patches and now they have been replaced by baby Small Tortoiseshell caterpillars and a few Red Admirals. There should be lots of these beautiful stinging nettle butterflies when the chrysalids hatch in a week or two.

Marbbled White

Photo Peter Savic

The Big Butterfly Count from Friday 17th July until Sunday 9th August.

All you have to do is walk slowly through a piece of countryside for 15 minutes and count the number of each kind of butterfly you see. If you need an identification guide here's a free one to download - just click.

All the instructions for sending in your observations are at bigbutterflycount.org/about

Why not do one 15 minutes in Noakes Grove (where you should see lots of different kinds) and then 15 minutes walking a footpath through local farmland. How much better for butterflies will Noakes Grove be?



Each week you could win £25,000 - we WILL win £26 a year

Essex Lotter supports Noakes Grove

Buy a £1 ticket each week and, every week, you'll have a 1:500 chance of winning a money prize. It might be £25,000 but more likely, £2,000, £250 or £25.

And every week, half your £1 will help fund our work at Noakes Grove

Please visit our page on the Essex lottery web site to find out more and buy your tickets


Become a country landowner

The whole of Noakes Grove belongs to the Organic Countryside Community Interest Company and its shareholders own the company.

So far our shareholders have bought over 22,300 £1 shares but there is still a long way to go before we have paid off the loan we needed to buy the whole nine acres of Noakes Grove

If you would like to buy shares, £100 will protect 25 sq metres for ever. The shares will never earn you any dividend but you will be a full member of Organic Countryside CIC and have votes in what the company does to protect Noakes Grove and the Walden Countryside.

You can keep your shares for as long as you wish, then give or leave them to your grandchildren. You'll own a part of the company and the company owns the land - it will never be built over or farmed intensively.

Number of shares

Buy a piece of Noakes Grove now: minimum investment £100



Copyright 2020
Organic Countryside Community Interest Company
Trading as Walden Countryside
Company number 06794848 - registered in England
VAT No: 947 3003 317

Updated 4 July 2020