Clifton and Hotwells
Improvement Society (CHIS)

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St Andrew's Churchyard

lime tree walk
Lime Tree Walk

A special and much-loved Clifton open space. Can you help to preserve it?

A group of people who, from time to time, would help to keep the area looking attractive and cared-for. This is rewarding work and it is remarkable how much can be achieved in as little as one hour. IF YOU WOULD LIKE JOIN OR TO KNOW MORE PLEASE CONTACT
RoseMary Musgrave [ or 0117 973 1704]

Sunday 1 november 10-3 Next working party at St Andrew's Churchyard.
There are a number of small jobs that need to be done in order that the appearance is kept up. Ivy is growing over some graves whilst others can hardly be seen because of over-hanging shrubs. Side shoots need to be taken off the yew trees along The Fosseway. Some shrubs need to be cut back and there are too many brambles near the doors on Clifton Road. We need many pairs of hands, even if only for one hour because, as we all know, 'Every little helps'. You could even walk round with a pair of secateurs in your pocket and end up making this special area more attractive.

If the weather is doubtful, please ring me on 0117 973 1704 between 9.30 and 10.15 when I should know if we will be able to work or not. If is cancelled, I will put a notice on the railings as soon after 10.30 as I can.

If you have any questions, please ring me on the number above.

RoseMary Musgrave

2009: For nearly six years there have been monthly parties from CHIS working in the churchyard. It is now felt that the time has come to reduce the number of CHIS working parties to 3 or 4 a year with the hope that in due course it can be passed on to people prepared to form a group which will care for all aspects of the churchyard.

There are matters which we need to complete. For 5 years we have been trying to get the City Council to mend the fountain at the Fosseway end. I am determined that this will be done. The other concern is what is to be done in the medieaval site, behind the War Memorial. I am going to make one more attempt to get a grant to help with this. If this is not successful, then it will probably be best if it is cleared of some of the undergrowth, made easy for maintenance and left for future Cliftonians to decide what to do. We will not lose the outline of the church, although it is almost certainly not in the correct place.
On the positive side the shrubs and trees which have been planted are doing well. The area which was cleared on the west side will be turfed in the autumn and planted with Acer species. It is hoped to put circular seat in the west side, perhaps round the new cherry tree.
I am very happy that our hopes of greater biodiversity seem to be happening. I have had several reports this year that hedgehogs have been seen. The sightings were on both sides of the Limewalk, as well as a pair trundling across it. I hope that they will increase and flourish.
I am also happy that the churchyard is now used much more as a place where people come and sit and where children play or enjoy watching the squirrels. This is what CHIS set out to do as its Millennium Project and we have succeeded. We should all thank the small but dedicated team who have done this and turned a derelict area into one which is now a pleasure to walk through.
RoseMary Musgrave

Replacing the bollards

2011 One year ago one of these unusual ‘barley sugar stick’ bollards was stolen. Living up to its name the Clifton and Hotwells Improvement Society (CHIS) removed the remaining bollard, took it to the Bristol foundry and had these two new ones cast from it. CHIS then painted them and reinstalled them

st andrews bollards
Making the sand mould. There is a silicate additive in the sand to make it hard quickly so that the molten iron will not stick to it.
st andrews bollards
Having made the mould and painted it to make it smooth for a good finish, it is set on fire to remove the moisture (moisture in sand explodes). Molten iron is then poured into the mould

st andrews bollards
Back in place and painted green and gold

Repainting the Railings

2005 Lime Tree Walk looks really good with its new coat of paint in June!
Dorothy Brown>
Dorothy Brown, the instigator perched on a ladder,
Maggie Shapland, paint on face as usual

The first weekend, despite the rain, a few volunteers painted quite a lot of railing, because this time they were gritblasted first, so all we had to do was apply top coat.
The second weekend finished nearly the rest of lime tree walk and more railings were prepared by hand.
The third weekend saw the railings by the grass round the rest of the cemetery prepared and most painted- very hot drying weather! Still a few more uprights to do.
October: The next part of the project was to prepare the railings by the fountain,and mend the fountain. The gate at the south side needs mending and painting and railings round the medieval cemetry.
Each person was given 8' railing to prepare and paint. Paint was provided but not brushes, newspaper or containers.

About 16-20 volunteers helped each day (2, 3, 9, 10 October), including students and we offer our thanks. About two thirds of the avenue has been painted. The overhanging ironwork for the lights, and the gates have yet to be tackled so there is a lot to do yet. It is a great achievement on the part of Dorothy Brown.

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Entrance to the churchyard

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General state of the railing
st andrews
A view of lime walk with one of the lights, and lots of volunteers busy preparing the railings
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Red oxide stage
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University students helping

st andrews
Francis Greenacre and RoseMary Musgrave

Undoubtedly the hard work put in by the small band of voluntary workers who meet once a month to clear and tidy the churchyard is having an effect. The spring bulbs planted two autumns ago are spreading. A few lessons have been learnt. Attractive as they may be, squirrels are a nuisance. They love to dig up and eat the bulbs which have been so painstakingly planted. But by observation we have discovered that they do not like snowdrops, aconites and bluebells. There is not a carpet of crocuses but there will be more of the less appetising bulbs planted. Clearance work during the winter focused on the mediaeval site at the south end of the graveyard and vast amounts of undergrowth were removed. There is still much to do there before a final decision is taken as to how show the outline of the church, which is now defined by a privet hedge.

To be able to leave the churchyard after five or so years in an easy-to-manage state for the Council, it was decided that a long-term policy should be introduced for the removal and planting of trees and shrubs. CHIS called in a professional arboriculturalist who listed every specimen on a numbered plan and gave his written recommendation. A meeting will be held in the near future with the author of the plan, those from the City Council who have responsibility for the churchyard and the group from CHIS. Much work will need to be done because many of the trees are, as it is said, in a state of 'post-maturity' and will become a hazard. Some shrubs are also past their prime and are not as an attractive shape as they should be, nor do they blossom so well as they once did. As you walk through the Limewalk, you will see that there are many new shrubs put in so that when the older ones are removed they are already there as replacements. To keep continuity whenever possible, cuttings have been taken and grown-on and planted. Shrubs are being planted along the west wall , these include:

With some of the generous donations from members we have had installed a seat round a tree by the rose bed.

Planning permission has been obtained to put a pair of gates on either side of the Limewalk at the Fosseway end, and these have now been installed. This enables people to walk through the graveyard and enjoy its tranquillity and find interest in the epitaphs. We are hoping to put up a covered shelter next year so people can sit and keep dry or shelter from the sun.

More help is always welcome for the working parties which are usually on the last Sunday of each month. A notice is posted on the railings giving dates.

RoseMary Musgrave coordinates the work

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