• Nature

    About Highbury Park

    Highbury Park is a haven for wildlife as well as for people. Grassland, ancient hedgerows, marshland, scrub, streams, pools and remnants of woodland are all to be found in the park as well as a host of ornamental trees and shrubs. These habitats are home to a wide range of plants and animals. In 2022 Andy Slater from Birmingham and Black Country Wildlife Trust and Ellen Pisolkar, Ecologist and HPF member submitted a Local Sites Assessment report to Birmingham City Council with the result that the whole Park and Estate are candidates for Site of National Importance for Nature Conservation (SINC) and Site of Local Importance for Nature Conservation (SLINC).…

  • Events,  Nature

    Bees, Trees & Me, 24 May

    There’s a buzz around Highbury Park in May! HPF, Highbury Orchard Community, Bee Keepers and friends invite you to Bees, Trees and Me, an artful celebration of bees and community, in the park on Saturday 24th May, 12-4 pm. There will be activities for all ages, including beehive inspections, making a grand bug hotel, poetry, wordplay and picnic, skep weaving and waggle dancing, plus who knows what other surprises on the day! It’s free, with opportunities to donate to voluntary groups and other projects. That said, we also need your help… …to join in and help create something special; …to collect materials for making the bug hotel; …and to give…

  • Feature Pages,  Nature,  Publications,  Resources

    Birds of Highbury Park e-book

    Highbury Park Friends have co-ordinated the creation of a 31-page book and tri-fold brochure about birds (and other wildlife) found in the park, largely through the efforts of Paul Anthony, Cathy Clarke, and Anne Gilbert. Paul (a long-time Friend, local resident, and wildlife observer) worked his notes into a longer narrative about local wildlife, some of it from century-old sources. The result is a ‘book-ends’ view of what birds have appeared and disappeared in the hundred years. Paul and Cathy worked together on the strategy for illustrating the book, whilst Cathy also developed a companion brochure. Cathy has produced earlier brochures and artwork for the Friends, so we are really…

  • Feature Pages,  Nature

    Highbury Park Plant Survey

    Ellen, Bridget, and Robyn carried out an initial Highbury Park Plant Survey on April 29 2011. It includes meadow flowers, woodland plants, and trees. The results are sorted alphabetically by Latin name.Norway Maple Acer platanoidesSycamore Acer pseudoplatanusYarrow Achillea millefoliumGround-elder Aegopodium podagrariaHorse-chestnut Aesculus hippocastanumGarlic Mustard Alliaria petiolataMeadow Foxtail Alopecurus pratensisCow Parsley Anthriscus sylvestrisDaisy Bellis perennisSilver Birch Betula pendulaButterfly-bush Buddleja davidiiShepherd’s-purse Capsella bursa-pastorisWavy Bitter-cress Cardamine flexuosaCuckooflower Cardamine pratensisCommon Mouse-ear Cerastium fontanumRosebay Willowherb Chamerion angustifoliumEnchanter’s-nightshade Circaea lutetianaCreeping Thistle Cirsium arvensePignut Conopodium majusHazel Corylus avellanaCotoneaster Cotoneaster sp.New Zealand Pigmyweed Crassula helmsiiHawthorn Crataegus monogynaCock’s-foot Dactylis glomerataMale Fern Dryopteris filix-mas agg.Great Willowherb Epilobium hirsutumHemp-agrimony Eupatorium cannabinumBeech Fagus sylvaticaJapanese Knotweed Fallopia japonicaWild Strawberry Fragaria vescaAsh Fraxinus excelsiorCleavers…

  • Conservation,  History,  Nature,  work party


    Restoration works You may have heard about plans to do some restoration work at the Italian Garden, and the viewing platform just below Chamberlain House. The Italian Garden project has been under discussion for a few months, between the Landscape Practice Group (LPG), the Trust & Charities Committee, Cllr. Mullaney, Phillada Ballard (historian) and others, including us. The plan is to bid for somewhere between £50k and £100k bid to restore part of the Italian Garden, mainly the balustrade and pergola, via English Heritage and perhaps Heritage Lottery. The English Heritage Grants for Historic Buildings, Monuments and Designed Landscapes seems a likely prospect. In order to develop a project budget,…

  • Events,  Imagery,  Nature,  work party

    Biodiversity Work Party

    Last Saturday’s work party was notable for two things: the amount of work that got done, and the number of people that didn’t turn up. Six parks workers, the council ecologist, and (briefly) one HPF volunteer were in attendance, and did a dramatic amount of work on the east end of the big pond, plus strimming around the Henburys pond. Part of the idea is to change the pH of both pools by clearing laurel and rhododendron from the banks. An extra benefit is that both ponds are now easier to walk around, and have somewhat more light falling on them. The result

  • Events,  Nature,  work party

    Woodland Wildflower Garden

    We’ve been working with Nicola Little of Quadron to identify and develop a patch of native wildflowers next to the apiary. The idea is to do something about the overabundance of Himalayan Balsam (Impatiens glandulifera) whilst also providing something of interest to the bees that’s suited to the location and habitat. The solution is to plant a variety of plant species that are both shade and damp tolerant, such as foxglove, ragged robin, bog primula, and wild garlic. But first, we need to clear a site, and decide what goes where! Volunteers needed So we are looking for volunteers to help with a) pulling up the balsam before it sets…