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The Harnham Water Meadows Framework Management Plan - Contents

11. Boundaries and their restoration

11.1 ANNEXE II gives meadow names and indicates the approximate extant boundary trees with green symbols.

11.2 Comparison with other watermeadow systems in the Salisbury area produces contradictions for the Harnham meadows. What are judged ‘historic’ boundaries, are generally in poor condition with intermittent willow and other pollards typically associated with drains and spillways. In a number of places, especially bordering Sammel’s Acre and opposite Fisherton Mill House are clear evidence of layered hedges. On the other hand, the planting of more recent trees and shelter belts (again mostly on the western meadows) is inappropriate in terms of both historic landscape and ecological value.

11.3 Replanting and restoration should have regard for historical authenticity as well as preserving visual amenity and visual access, particularly from the Town Path.

11.4 HWMT should, with reference to watermeadows systems at Britford, Lower Woodford and to evidence on the ground at Harnham, plan to restore at least some historic boundaries. John Vickerman and Tim Tatton-Brown are advising on priorities for restoration and on desirable species. While extensive willow re-planting is essential, shrub species must also include berry bearing bushes such as: Blackthorn, Hawthorn, Field Maple, Hazel and a corners with Elder are all traditional hedging species. These should be interspersed at sensible intervals with stand alone trees allowed to mature above the hedge height such as: Oak, Holly, Silver Birch, Alder and Willow species. Additionally, trailing plants such as Bramble, White Bryony, Black Bryony, Honeysuckle, and Traveller’s Joy may be added. These are all traditional hedging species and associated plants found in old hedgerows which provide good cover, and fruit and berry food for birds, small mammals and insects.

11.5 Priority locations for restoration should be (south to north) the boundary including S19 running through Five Acres, the former parish hedge between the Avon and Nadder (south Branch), the boundary of Seven Acres and Martin’s Mead, the boundary between lower and upper Seven Acres to the hatch pool, the prominent pollards around Martin’s Mead, the stretch on the NE side of Sammel’s Acre to the existing hedge, the boundaries of Rotary Copse (Formally Part of Cooper’s Mead) to S10 and thence restore the boundary between Great Mead and Ivy/Coopers Mead to S4/S5. Implementation will provide wildlife corridors across the meadows.

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