Radbourne Walk

The Radbourne Walk is a narrow path that runs from Mattock Lane to Occupation Road in Ealing London. This path has existed for over 180 years and was a part of Ealing Dean Common when in 1832 when the common was enclosed as allotments. The Radbourne Stream that originates in Castlebar hill and can be seen above ground in Little Ealing is believed to flow in a culvert somewhere close to the path hence the name Radbourne Walk. The image shown right shows some of the butterflies and insects found in the Radbourne including the Endangered Stag beetle.

In 2016 our focus has been on maintaining the walk for users. This has meant: Litter - We have ensured the litter was kept to a minimum. We have cleared around two bin liners of rubbish each month. This rubbish is mostly beer cans and plastic bottles. Plant maintenance - The plant growth was cleared in the winter during two volunteer days. The first volunteer day cut back all the growth and tilled the front section of the soil and added annual wildflowers. The annual wildflowers have been i my opinion a little disappointing but we will continue with this plan.

Our plans for the Radbourne walk for 2015 were expanded from our early goals in 2014. This was due to a potential grant from Transform your space. We came third in the TYS listings and have the potential for some money from this project. We will be working on raising crowdsourcing money in 2015.

We started the Radbourne Walk clean up in February 2014 and held monthly volunteering days on the first Saturday of each month. We worked on one section at a time the volunteers removed litter, rubble, metal, plastic and glass. We found a lot more rubbish than expected and created enough rubbish for two skips. We cleaned the tarmac path to remove muddy puddles and turned over the soil and introduced wildflower annuals to the front section in four main areas. We removed unwanted plant species like Japanese Knotweed and we also added Stag beetle areas with log piles dug into the ground.

In November 2013 Christina Fox came to me with an idea to improve the path that runs beside the Allotments. I will let her explain How it all began . . .
Greater than the sum of their parts. If you try neat gin it's not that great, neither is tonic water. But, when you put the two together you have a winner. Sometimes ideas are like that. One on its own won't go anywhere - but put two discoveries together and you might have something special.
Inspiring moment No 1...

The Radbourne Walk Enhancement Plan
Environment creation
The first of the three main aims in the footpath enhancement plan is to turn this neglected area into a visually attractive and colourful place. To create an immediate impact with plants, I recommend using selective native cornfield annuals. One benefit of using annual plants is that they will grow quickly from seed within one year. Another important benefit of these plants is that in the long-term these species will eventually die out unless the soil is annually turned over.

So my alarn goes off at 8.00 on Saturday morning and any sensible person would have rolled over and gone back to sleep. But I drag myself out of bed and look out the window....all I can see is frost.

Frosty morning in Ealing Dean Allotments