Programme – Details

Summer Programme (April - August 2024)

For any forthcoming Society activity, each member who is planning to participate should assess his/her own risk and that of their household having regard to his/her own health and circumstances. This requirement is in accordance with the Society’s Constitution that states ‘Members taking part in any meeting or activity do so at their own risk.’

30    PILCH FIELD: Leader – Jenny Mercer

Pilch Field is one of the very few SSSIs in north Bucks, designated for their very rich flora and variety of habitats – some  old ridge and furrow, limestone slopes and species-rich wet areas along spring lines. Early spring delights the eye with Cowslips on the ridges and Green-winged orchids on the banks. For the ‘orchidophiles’ there are other species together with many showy flowers as well as several ’greens and browns’ of significance, e.g. Adders-tongue fern.
Grid Ref: SP 749 321. Postcode MK17 0NX. What 3 words: socket.gala.inserting
Parking by the roadside, but avoid the very sharp bend!

7    No Meeting

14    HAZELEY WOOD and NORTH BUCKS WAY – Mike LeRoy and Martin Ferns

Woodland planted in1991/92 with Oak, Birch and Hornbeam on former arable land to form Hazeley Wood. Several surveys of the woodland and its wildlife were carried out by Milton Keynes Natural History Society. We will walk there along North Bucks Way which is an ancient green lane flanked by overgrown hedges that we will take a look at.
Meet in car park at Oakhill, at west end of Portway (H5) where it joins Otterburn Crescent.
SP815361 – MK5 6LY – totals.kilowatt.hugs

Meet 10.15 for 10.30 – 12.30
Distinctive habitats and flora of heathland with acid grassland; and trees and flora of remnant Ancient Woodland on Greensand and Clay. Parts of a National Nature Reserve.
Share cars. Meet at Stockgrove car-park off Brickhill Lane (£4 up to 3 hours)
SP920293 – LU7 0BA –
Postcode LU7 0BA is for nearest houses; continue up road for 500+meters.
Park entrance on left

21    WATERHALL PARK – Carla Boswell
A gentle walk through meadows with trees and patches of wild flowers in Bletchley: the river at your side as you walk out, the canal on your way back.
Park in Dobbies Garden Centre, Watling Street, Bletchley
MK17 9JH – SP887339 – feed.escape.oval

28 OUSE VALLEY – Gary Fowler
Meet at 18.45 for 19.00 start
A walk along the river Great Ouse as it goes under the railway viaduct and skirts the northern edge of the Flood Plain Forest, a chance to feed some fish and watch birds. Although the paths are hard gravel it may be wise to bring wellies if it has been wet.
Park in the ‘viaduct’ car park off Wolverton road/Haversham
road. SP817421 – qualify.regularly.nowadays

Meet at 18.45 for 19.00 start
A small nature reserve off the A5, packed with Flowers and butterflies. At its centre it has a brick-pit which is now a water-filled lake. The lake is surrounded by trees and is home to several types of orchids and many types of insects; in particular, Bedfordshire’s first Downy Emerald Dragonfly – an insect scarce north of the Thames was found in 2006.  It is also interesting because it was once an asphalt works and flowers attempt to grow in tarmac showing the effect of such a restrictive substance on the growth.
Meet in the car park of the Flying Fox pub, on Sheep Lane just off the A5 south of Little Brickhill, from where we will car-share to the site. MK17 9HD – SP933304 – eruptions.breached.slid

Sat 8    ROOKERY PIT SOUTH walk – Matt Andrews and Martine Harvey
10.00 for 10.15 start
We will walk from the car park (see below) to the Rookery Pits complex where hopefully there will be an array of summer migrant birds, dragonflies, plants and so on.    Recently, Bearded Tits, Bittern and Cuckoo have been breeding here with regular sightings of Hobby.  Garden, Cettis, Sedge and Reed Warblers breed here in good numbers along with numerous Nightingales although the latter may not now be singing unfortunately as they will have newly hatched chicks and tend to stop singing at this point.
Normal stout footwear is advised, the terrain is bumpy but not overly strenuous walking.
Grid reference  01169 42686 What3words: promotes, boasted, daunted
Driving on the A421 dual carriageway from MK to the junction for Marston Moretaine and the Marston Moretaine Travel Lodge…turn off here and then RIGHT across the dual carriageway on Beancroft Road…across the first roundabout then at the second roundabout, turn LEFT onto Bedford Road.  Drive to the second road junction with Green Lane and turn RIGHT into Green Lane.
When you reach the level-crossing at Stewartby Station, about a kilometre from the A421, go over the level-crossing then turn first RIGHT into the service road for Rookery South ERF power plant (MK43 9LY).
Drive along this road which runs parallel to the railway line on your right and the pit shore on the left – all the way towards the huge triple chimneys of the plant. (look out for regular Peregrines who use these chimneys as lookouts).
At the end of this service road, the route goes left and down a slope with an open pit on the left, at this point, turn RIGHT towards the Reception, offices and car park for the power plant.  Matt has an access pass to this car park where he will be from 09.30am until 10.15am.

Meet at 1845 for 1900 start
The planned walk will include the site of the Roman Villa at Bancroft, the North Loughton Valley Park, and the windmill at Bradville. There should be a reasonable range of birds, insects, and plants, and it is hoped that that the Bradville bee-orchids will still be in flower.
Meet at the Parks Trust North Loughton Valley Park car park at Bancroft Park, Constantine Way off H2 Millers Way, MK13 0RA – SP826404 – panthers.reflector.necklace
(not the adjacent Bancroft Park Residents Club car park)

18    SHENLEY WOOD PONDS – Martin Kincaid
Meet at 18.45 for 19.00 start
We have visited Shenley Wood itself many times but here is a different slant, looking at the nature in the ponds outside the main wood.
Park at Merlewood Drive car park, Shenley Wood.  MK5 6GG (off Tattenhoe Street), grid ref: SP823356, what3words: timed.luck.parked

25    EMBERTON COUNTRY PARK – Leader: Alan Nelson
6.45 for 7.00pm start
Alan Nelson has arranged access for us to Emberton Country Park. Participants will be asked to record and submit their sightings for the park’s ecological dataset.
Meet at the country park gatehouse, Emberton
SP 886 500 – MK46 5DL – inflation.assist.strongly

2        NO EVENT – LINFORD LAKES NR visit postponed to 23 July

11.00 am-4.00 pm
The annual celebration of Howe Park Wood SSSI and its wildlife hosted by the Parks Trust.
Could you spare an hour or two to show people our display and tell them about the Society? Offers to Martin Kincaid please.
Park at Howe Park Wood Centre car park: SP830344 – roadmap.softly.september

9            SHERINGTON CHURCH – Peter Meadows
Meet at 18.45 for 19.00 start
Sherington Churchyard and Butterfly Garden is a churchyard which is managed sensitively for wildflowers and insects together with an adjacent piece of land equally rich in wildlife.
Park in Church Road (NOT Church End) Sherington, MK16 9PB – SP 891467 – sounds.wide.vowed

16      BLUE LAGOON NATURE RESERVE – Martin Kincaid
Meet at 18.45 for 19.00 start
Blue Lagoon is a very important site for dragonflies and butterflies. The main feature of this Reserve is a large, deep, water-filled pit (remaining from the former brickworks) which gives it its name. Woodland, grassland meadows and scrub surround it. With willows of different types and plants such as common-spotted orchid, bee orchid, cowslip, ragworts, spotted medick, white and red campion for the plant lovers, and many different birds, reptiles, amphibians, dragonflies and butterflies for everyone.
The Park has been renovated recently, with new paths and cycleways, so it will be interesting to see what has been done.
Parking off Drayton Road, Bletchley (signposted), go under railway bridge 150m to car park. SP870325 – tilt.crowned.lied

21.00 start. 
(If this event is rained off on 20th, it will be rescheduled to Saturday 27th)

This is a joint event with the Bucks Invertebrate Group, who provide several moth traps. In 2021 in ideal weather we recorded well over 200 moths. (Full list is on the MKNHS website)
A later start than normal to allow for some good mothing time, weather permitting. Fold up chairs, torch, and a flask of something to drink have been helpful in the past.
Meet in the roadside car park south of Nash: MK17 0EH – SP786327 – luring.intruding.blacken
Extra parking inside the gate will be available.

23        LINFORD LAKES NATURE RESERVE– Martine Harvey

Meet at or before18.45 for 19.00 start
Linford Lakes Nature Reserve has a variety of insect and birds with a number of bird hides to enjoy. We will look for Dragonflies, as they thrive in the lakeside and riverside environment. We will also look for plants and birdlife, and perhaps we will see a Kingfisher.

Meet in the Reserve Car park, MK14 5AH – SP842427 – presides.engrossed.output
Please car share where possible as there are limited parking spaces.
You will need to get through an access gate which is kept locked, so please arrive between 18.30 and 18.55 as the gates will be locked after that time.

30      OLD WOLVERTON CANAL – Jenny Mercer

Meet at 18.45 for 19.00 start
The walk is easy, mostly on metalled paths, and crosses just 2 grassy fields towards the Iron Trunk aquaduct.  The focus will be on identifying plants of wet places – for example fairy flax, water dock and figwort are locally common on this route. Over 150 plants were identified a decade or more ago on a Society walk led by Roy Maycock supported by Mary Sarre.  The riverside walk should be alive with dragonflies and other insects.
Meet at the Holy Trinity Church car park, Old Wolverton, MK12 5NH – SP804412 – unloading.forklift.sunblock

6            MAGNA PARK LAKE – Gary Fowler / Martin Ferns
Meet at 18.45 for 19.00 start
This business park was once countryside. We will see the Broughton Brook and a pond associated with it.
There is a very small car park at SP915390 – ambushed.crowd.elevates   If there is no space, park on Fen Street or local service roads.

13          BOW BRICKHILL WOODS – Derek and Judy Taylor
Meet at 18.45 for 19.00 start
Details to be advised.
Park in the area near the church:  SP912343 – went.humble.likely

20     WESTBURY FARM: EARLY MOTHING – Ayla Webb and Martin Kincaid
Meet at 18.45 for 19.00 start
Westbury Farm is a semi-wild garden with plenty of cover and food for moths. As the evenings are drawing in moth traps will be set up early at the normal start time, so we can look at later types of moths.
Park at MK5 6AA – SP826356 – severe.tripped.liners or on Foxcovert Road