Duke’s River

The Conservation Volunteers (TCV) held a volunteer day on Friday 22 February in the Duke’s River, starting at Octavia Road and ending at the Royal Oak. The primary purpose was to remove the invasive floating pennywort, but they also removed a lot of rubbish. They were delighted to see our resident kingfisher. They have promised to tip us off when they are next holding a volunteer day in the Woodlands and will welcome any volunteers from the estate who wish to join them. They provide waders and all necessary equipment. Details of local activities can be found on their website: www.tcv.org.uk/london/richmond.

Unfortunately, they always work on weekdays, so many people are working and unable to join them. It’s unlikely we’ll get enough notice to advertise an event in WERFA News. So, if anyone is interested in joining TCV’s activities, their best bet is to keep checking the website.

Watching Nature – Winter Thrushes

Of the 5 thrushes that can be found in the UK, two can be seen only in the winter months. These birds travel south from Scandinavia and Iceland to avoid the bad weather and search for food in our warmer climate. The smaller one is the Redwing. The larger of the two is a Fieldfare. Slightly bigger than our native Mistle Thrush it can be observed in groups of from 10 up to several hundred or more.

Look for this colourful thrush at the top of large leafless trees around the estate, slate-grey head and rump with a chestnut coloured back and wings and always facing into the wind. The name is derived from their being seen most commonly searching for worms on rough open grassland or fields (the traveller over the fields). Fallen apples, berries and fruit are readily eaten along with snails, hawthorn, rose hips and rowan. They arrive in October
and return to their breeding grounds in the spring.

Redwing– The other thrush is perhaps a little more common but is often overlooked.  The Redwing is slightly smaller than our native song thrush and perhaps much more attractive with its red flanks and cream eyestripe.

They arrive from Northern Europe and Iceland in their tens of thousands, a classic night time migrant that sometimes comes to grief in the dark by striking lighthouses and then dying in their hundreds.

These two species will often occur together in nomadic winter flocks as they both search for the same food supply. Look out for them in your garden or do what I do, sit on the bench by the Dukes River and see them feeding on the ivy overhanging the water.

                                                                                                                 Les

Neighbourhood Watch

Fraud Awareness Event – Wed 6th March

The Hounslow Central Safer Neighbourhood Team  will be present to provide crime prevention advice,  in partnership with Barclays Bank.

12.00pm – 2.00pm on 6th March at Barclays, 210 High Street, Hounslow, TW3 1DL

Support —Tips — Advice — Guidance

In the Borough

LB Hounslow’s Consultation Hub https://haveyoursay.hounslow.gov.uk/This month includes:

Dockless Bikeshare

What did we think of the one-year Mobike trial? Ends 3rd March.
Proposed Additions to the Local List

Many suggestions on local features that are worth preserving – which to choose? Ends 6th March.

♦  A reminder – The Ward Boundaries review first round is open until 18 March; anyone can submit a map of their proposals.The Local Government Boundary Commission will produce draft recommendations in mid-2019, these recommendations will be open for further public consultation. http://www.lgbce.org.uk/

♦  Sign up/renew Garden Waste collection service by 1st April.

♦  Hounslow Council is moving – after the recent Civic Centre closure event the Council internet was due to move end Feb and offices will start to move during March to new Hounslow House.

Not here please!

No commercial vehicles or skips are allowed in WERFA Park in connection with work to individual houses.

Car access via 10-foot way is permitted only for residents for garaging or in exceptional circumstances agreed by WERFA.

Damage has been caused recently to the 10-foot way within WERFA Park and to sports court concrete surroundsby unauthorised heavy vehicles.

Next Door?

There is a local social network called Nextdoor Woodlands. Some residents are concerned that a recent note about it seems not to have been sent by the person named.  As with any social network we need to be cautious about providing our contact details and the result can be a stream of emails, many promoting services over a wider area. But it can be useful.

If interested it’s at-www.nextdoor.co.uk

In the Garden

March is a great time to start thinking about your soil. Add a good mulch of compost or well rotted manure to get your garden off on the right foot this year. By doing so you will be nurturing micro-organisms that are absolutely essential for healthy, fertile soil.

No digging required – it is much better for your soil to leave the mulch on the surface. Friendly garden worms will be very happy to do the rest for you!                                                                              Julia

Heathrow Land Referencing

Heathrow is required to seek updated information on land ownership where their plans may have adverse effects. We can choose whether to respond and either:

  • Reply and get any updates on plans
  • Ignore it but expect more requests.

Aviation Strategy

Another consultation, this time from the Department for Transport. It’s about Aviation Strategy until 2050 and assumes continued growth in demand. Closing date is 11th April. For more info see the DfT website, HACAN website.

Father Christmas

Father Christmas will be delivering on the Woodlands Estate as usual on Christmas Eve. As usual we are asking parents to provide a small present themselves and there will also be a small charge of £2 per present delivered to help Father Christmas maintain his sleigh. The presents should be wrapped and clearly marked with the child’s name and address, and delivered to 69 Woodland Gardens with the fee by 23rd December.

Sunday 9th December 2018 at 2.30pm


We are putting on an extra special ‘festive’ family film screening in December suitable for all ages.

“After a string of garden gnome disappearances in London, Gnomeo & Juliet look to legendary detective Sherlock Gnomes to solve the case of their missing friends and family.”

Come and enjoy a great cinematic experience for a fraction of the price and on your doorstep.
(We have it on good authority that the big man himself might show up!)

Sunday 9th December 2018, WERFA Pavilion, Isleworth
Doors open 2pm • Film starts 2.30pm
Festive refreshments on sale pre-screening including homemade popcorn and themed ice-cream!
Children must be accompanied by an adult for admission.
Tickets just £3 per person.

Pauline Hooper

We were sad to hear of the death of Pauline Hooper in October after a long illness. Pauline is survived by husband Patrick. Long time Woodlands residents, they established a reputation as enthusiastic and skilled country dance partners.

Papa George Band review

Saturday 17th was a great evening with the Papa George Band. We were treated to a stunning first set of classic blues numbers. Kicking off with their great version of Taj Mahal’s ‘Strut’, we were completely mesmerized by the supreme musical skills of Papa George on lead guitar and vocals and Pete and Tom providing terrific back up on bass and drums.

Following a short break for a tasty meal of chilli, baked spuds and slaw their second blues set, if anything surpassed their first. Stevie Wonder’s ‘Superstition and ‘I Wish’, ZZ Topp’s ‘Nasty Dogs and Funky Kings’ being just some of the fabulous numbers we were treated to.

A wonderful show, helped along by all the usual volunteers providing support and sustenance. Another great WERFA evening to remember: come back soon George! Dick Knox

Neighbourhood Watch

Neighbourhood Watch

It’s that time of the year where burglars are out and about; so please secure your property before leaving home. Recent burglaries are reported (two in Whitton Dene) where the rear window/patio door was smashed.

OWL provides the public with the latest local crime alerts sent by email, telephone or SMS. To sign up see: https://www.owl.co.uk/met/

For reporting a crime which has already occurred, an alternative to phoning 101 (which can entail a long wait) is to report it on-line to: https://www.met.police.uk/ro/report/ocr/how-to-report-a-crime/
To report crime in progress or suspected to be happening or about to happen, of course it’s a 999 call.