SMJ Nature Reserve

For the past 2 decades my parents have been regenerating a 3/4 mile stretch of old railway line - transforming it from a darkened, overgrown canopy of hawthorn into a thriving eco system for wildlife of all variety - shapes and sizes!

This photo shows the massive clearance of a south facing embankment.  The south facing nature is very important as its a perfect sun trap which the insects, especially butterflies LOVE!  Imagine at one stage it was a mat of hawthorn with nothing growing beneath the shaded canopy - Then my dad cleared it - re-seeded and now it looks like the picture above!

You will be glad to know that my dad DIDN'T dig this big watery hole out by hand.  For this job his lovely neighbour and friend Ben gave him a helping hand with his mini digger!  Again, once completely overgrown and overshadowed by out of control hawthorn - the area was cleared - dug out......

.....and now it looks like this!

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