Minutes 6 July 2016


Present:     Apologies:
Helen Oubridge (Treasurer)
Anna Cordell (Secretary)
Ian Wilson
Angela Lodge
Patrick Gaskell-Taylor
Charles Wicksteed
    Rebecca Hanley


The seats are on order from Hexagon - half price @ £976. We will pay the other half when they are installed (should be by the end of this week - 8/7/16)). The benches will have five sides, green. HO met the man who made them, used to work for the Council. Started up his own business as a metal fabricator. He made all the fences and bridges in the gardens in the past. They are very simple. Of the quotes we got, that was a really good price. This will leave us with just over £1000 in the account, which can be used for insurance, premiums or for the party.


The pergola has fallen at one end. Ian suggests cutting it down. Rob Wiltshire (Green Spaces, Barnet Council) emailed Helen end of June saying he know about the pergola and that it will be fixed.


The arch will be fixed at some point - paid by the Council. Helen thinks they will take the top off first, then fence it off with a sign ‘Don’t climb - Danger’ (to prevent being sued). Sandbags under the arch will be used for damming the pond.


The pump is running. HO pulls out the odd stick from the stream and pond. Patrick saw a man and son pouring little frogs into the pond. There is a lot of weed, which hopefully will protect the (plastic) heron. The weed should be dredged out in November; not earlier, otherwise it will kill the baby fish. It is best to get it out before the winter sets in. HO fishes out floating stuff with a rake - ie, sticks or wind blows them in.


Bracket fungus was on the oak by the bridge. Ian took a small one growing and replanted it in his garden - he can replace it if the big one comes down.


Ian wants to give up the Gardening club. He doesn’t mind jumping in the pond with his waders twice a year - but no one helps out, apart from Charles and Helen when they can, even though they advertise it every month. Helen might do the odd bit of weeding (anyone can do this if they wish). HO and CW do the odd bit of planting and trimming (not necessarily on a Saturday). Ian pulls up sedge and cuts back ferns and bracken. CW chopped sedge off the day lilies.

Ian will take the banner down. If people ask, they will say they ‘are giving it a rest’. Then HO, CW and IW can be flexible about it. For wading work, he will let HO & CW know. Ian needs someone on the bank to help when he is in the pond weeding it, plus trying not to kill fish and newts.


  • Graffiti on the pump shed and loo - they get repainted by the Council.
  • Cracked paths - Rob will re-do but not until the arch is done. They will get re-tarmacked and will make all paths wheelchair-accessible, ie, will enlarge the paths. (Barnet Council have taken on paying for things, such as re-doing the paths).
  • Meadow was very long - Yellow rattle, it’s a semi-parasite of grass; keeps grass down to let other flowers grow. Helen will put seed down to help reduce it. She has put poppies in there but they haven’t grown. Helen counted/catalogued in April 12-15 plants. The meadow has a lot of vetch (tiny blue flowers), lady’s slipper, craniums, and plantains. HO will probably have to ask the Council to cut it down in September (once a year). They would cut it down completely but we want the seeds to take.
  • Weedkiller has been put down on to the paths.
  • Stream running OK.
  • Pond full of weeds.
  • Man and son coming with more frogs soon.
  • AGM still on the notice board.


A bed and bike were found at the top on the right (Abbotts Road); one house has taken the fence down and looks like they’re going to take some of the park. HO spoke to Rob about it and he is aware of it.

9 HIGHLANDS GARDENS PARTY - 17th September 2016

The date of party was agreed to be changed from 10th to 17th September. It will be from 2-4pm. Set up will be at 1pm. A leaflet needs to be made 2x weeks beforehand. Helen will check with Rebecca Hanley to see if she’s OK with the date.

HO can do an A5 leaflet to advertise the party and put through doors in early September. Douglas Findlay is happy to print it (even though he no longer lives locally).

At the party, there will be afternoon tea. We could have a bucket for donations for the Friends of Highlands Gardens. If people want to subscribe, they can write their details in a book. Subs are voluntary.