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© Somerford Keynes Parish Council and contributors 2014-9
Village Lake
Village Lake Team Feb 2019

You Voted for your Lake!

Congratulations to everyone. We were successful in the Calor Rural competition and will receive £5000 to help the future of the lake. The results were announced on 18th July on Facebook by Calor over a period of five hours (no, we don’t know why either). An early celebration was held on site at 10am on Sunday 21st July. See picture above. Michael Wilding said “Villagers of all ages, gathered at the Village Lake on Sunday 21 July, to celebrate the grant of £5000 that we have be given by Calor, for educational, ecological & recreational enhancements to our Lake.  The Lake Committee will now start planning the work, which will be carried out in the next 12 months. A pond dipping platform, owl boxes with cameras, bat boxes, floating island for bird nesting are all items on the committee's vision list”

Volunteer activities on site

If you would like to volunteer, get your name on Mike Willis’ email list to ensure you know when and where. Saturday 31st August 2019 Work carried out was: Cutting back growth alongside path and safety equipment Preparing area for shed Installing "steadying" post at each end of boardwalk, requested by those who are not so spritely on their feet.  Ramps will be installed at end of September The morning ended with a barbecue.

7-9 April Bluebell bulb planting

Saturday 9 March

6 people, 1 hour, 500 snowdrops planted at Village Lake last Saturday morning!

Saturday 23 February 2019

The picture by Mike Wilding above shows the team having a break during the morning. Work carried out successfully was burning all the trimmings and fallen branches from the autumn tidy up, putting up permanent boundary sign on edge of the Woodland, removing more original tree protection sleeves and planting hedging whips in gaps around the boundary on a beautiful sunny day. Why not join them next time? Marks in the recent snow show numerous visitors even in the cold weather. Do make use of the area if you have not recently visited.

29th September 2018

Mike Wilding, assisted by Mike Willis, John Whitwell, Nick Hunt and Andy Clark, spent a sunny autumn morning clearing overhanging growth from the main path, particularly the brambly approach to the boardwalk and the boardwalk itself. Our application for section 106 Lower Mill Estate grant money is now being resubmitted  in two stages, the first stage of which is for the required ecological survey and subsequent updated environmental management plan. After these are carried out, we will be in a position to apply for a grant to actually carry out the work Mike

Volunteer Morning Saturday 16

June 2018

Mike Wilding writes: We held our 2nd volunteer morning on the 16th June, and were pleased to welcome some new willing volunteers.  Work included removing the remainder of the old tree guards from the original planting, and sending them for recycling strimming around the benches and picnic tables lopping branches and brambles overhanging the path There were sightings of the four "cootlings" who hatched out earlier in the year, and the morning's work was concluded with some welcome refreshments Our thanks go to LME for two cuts of our path this year ..long may they continue to help out. Our application for grant money from the LME section 106 fund held by CDC, has now gone in, and we await the result, which is expected by the end of July.  Hopefully this will fund some ecological work around the lake. Mike Wilding  


Lake 99 or Village Lake

Lake 99 is a parcel of land once part of Lower Mill Farm that was cut off from the farm by the new bypass built in the 1960s. The rest of the farm is now Lower Mill Estate. The farm was bought by ARC and most of it dug out as sand and gravel. When gravelling was complete, the “moonscape” was left for some years, and after a couple of ownership changes became the holiday village you see today. It might have had a huge lit- up pleasure dome, but we managed to see that off. Our little field was not sold on, but suddenly dug, when the Government decided on a review of gravel planning applications from 50 years before that were not taken up, but still valid. Despite our worries, and after much consultation with the Parish Council and neighbours, digging did little to annoy the village, though caused annoyance from some noise heard by immediate neighbours. The then owners, Hanson, successors to ARC, promised to give the resulting lake to the village. After some years of delay, mainly due to reorganisations of the gravel company - [it is now a German company], we got our lake. The company paid for a management plan by funding an MSc student attached to the Water Park Society, as it then was. A tree planting day with villagers and company representatives took place about 2004, then nothing happened for some years before ownership was transferred, during which time the tots in the picture grew into teenagers. Meg, on the left did the management plan, John on the right was the Hanson linkman. On May 5th 2016, an opening party was held. It rained of course. The ribbon, held by then Parish Council Chair Sarah Powell, was cut by John Hayward watched by assembled enablers (below) and a large group of villagers, who then had their various picnics, while their dogs (all on leads, as it is a nature reserve) fraternised and children played. The lake is now available for villagers to enjoy, walking, picnicing, playing and looking out for wildlife. A management team has been formed. Councillor John Whitwell is the PC contact. Pictured are left, County Councillor Shaun Parsons, Parish Councillors with John Hayward (middle) and Jill Bewley (right) from the Cotswold Water Park Trust at the opening ceremony. [Jill is no longer at the CWPTrust].
More pictures will be added over time. Do please send in any pictures that you would like to display
Page last edited 8 November 2019
Lake 99 - A history Volunteering Picture Gallery August 2019 August 2019