Meon Vale Residents’ Association (MVRA) are taking steps to make their community greener and more sustainable with help from Warwickshire County Council’s Green Shoots Fund.
Meon Vale Residents’ Association were successful in their Green Shoots bid for £4900 in funding to provide:
- Wildflower planting materials;
- Water butts; and
- Compost bins.
The three key outcomes that will be delivered by Making Meon Vale Sustainable project are:
- The creation of new wildflower meadows;
- Enabling the residents of Meon Vale to carry out composting at home; and
- Enabling water saving at residential properties and on community allotments in the area.
Many of the open spaces in the new village of Meon Vale are currently covered in grass and nettles. The Residents Association plan to clear an area in the entrance to Meon Vale Woods to plant a wildflower meadow. In Spring 2022, residents will be able to enjoy flourishing green spaces, thanks to the use of ‘bee bombs’ (native wildflower seed balls). The increase in flower biodiversity will encourage the arrival of more insects, which will help support the local bird and bat populations that nest throughout the village and local woodlands.
The fun started at the Meon Vale FunFest in August, where Debbie Griffiths from Lower Quinton got her hands dirty by making bee bombs to give away for children to plant where they wanted. The Meon Vale Baby and Toddler Group are hoped to help make the bee bombs in Spring, promoting the importance of supporting our environment among even the youngest members of the community, who will get messy hands and have some fun along the way. Bee bombs can be purchased or made at home, with many guides on how to make and use them available online.
Once the wildflowers have taken root, nature will take its course and spread the foliage further afield. The Residents’ Association hope to start a Nature Group in Meon Vale that will host wildlife talks and bat walks to raise awareness of the benefits of thriving biodiversity in the Meon Vale area.
New compost bins, purchased with the Green Shoots funding, will allow residents to improve the soil quality in their gardens and reduce their household kitchen and garden waste (waste that might otherwise have ended up in black bins). Composting is a process by which kitchen and garden waste are decomposed to produce a rich, natural fertiliser. This self-made supply of compost will bring new opportunities to grow vegetables and plants on ground that was previously covered in turf.
The new water butts will help the community to save both money and water. It is estimated that a water butt can save around 24,000 litres of water per year which amounts to approximately 20% of average household usage. MVRA have plans in place to offer ‘gardening guru’ sessions in 2022, to build on the activity made possible by Green Shoots funding and promote greener living in the local community.
Caroline Alderson, Treasurer at Meon Vale Residents’ Association, said: “MVRA was set up in February 2021, after the community at Meon Vale were brought together in 2020 to Save Meon Woods from development. We are absolutely delighted to have been awarded £4900 to support green initiatives in Meon Vale. We have a huge opportunity to improve biodiversity in the woods, along with supporting residents to live greener lifestyles. The bid for water butts, compost bins and wildflowers is the first in our plans to Make Meon Vale Sustainable. We’ve had fantastic support to build the Residents’ Association from Councillors Manuella Horton and Izzi Seccombe, and WCAVA. We have also benefitted from the County Councillors’ Grant and a Sport England grant.”
Further information about Meon Vale can be found here: Meon Valve, and information about the Meon Vale Residents’ Association can be found on their Facebook page, here: Meon Vale Residents Association.