||The restoration of a
main landmark in Castle Cary
||A wildlife habitat for years to come
|A place to ponder
and natural beauty
in the town centre
backdrop to remember lives lost in two world wars
Design by Nicky Cartwright Avalon GardenCare
Horsepond, one of the main historical features of Castle Cary is in need
of restoration to return it to its former glory.
As a small group of volunteers, over
the past two years, we have been trying to control the highly invasive blanket weed in
the pond through safe chemical treatments and hard work (raking out the blanket
weed whilst retaining the “healthy”/oxygenating weed).
We have also tried to
maintain what’s good in the pond by controlling the water flow out of the
Slowly life is returning to the pond and we have recently seen water shrews,
small coarse fish, shrimp, waterboat men, dragon fly and the occasional newt.
There are also two elderly goldfish, probably escapees from the local carnival fair!
restore The Horsepond to a self-sustaining eco-system through the
introduction of oxygenating plants that can give life back to the pond.
discrete planting (lilies, marginals and reeds) we can bring colour and beauty
to the town centre and more importantly life to the pond. It will be a place to
stop and ponder (no pun intended) as well as a fitting backdrop to remember
those who lost their lives in two world wars.
It has taken over two years to get on top of the blanket weed but without
introduction of plants into the pond it will soon take over and re-establish itself.
Horsepond has a slow but constant flow of water from springs coming off Lodge Hill. The
flow helps to oxygenate the water but is not sufficient enough to prevent the
The flow of the Horsepond is difficult to influence but reducing the surface
area where light can interact with the algae spores that form blanket weed can
help to keep the weed at bay or at least slow down the speed at which it grows.
By planting healthy oxygenating plants such as lilies, reeds and marginals the
surface area for direct sunlight to penetrate can be significantly reduced,
blanket weed can be put in check, a stable eco-system established and wildlife
and aquatic life can return and thrive in the pond.
water quality has
been tested by a qualified hydrologist who assures us
that it is clean enough to drink..
|Blanket weed can grow at a tremendous rate when conditions are
In very high light levels with high levels of nutrients, blanket weed can
grow at over 2 metres per day!
In the summer, heat and high light levels coupled with the slow
flow are perfect conditions for the weed to grow; and in The Horsepond it grows
at an alarming rate. Blanket weed is a pernicious weed; it rapidly raises the pH
level of the water, taking oxygen out replacing it with carbon dioxide,
which effectively suffocates life in the pond.
|Dream to Reality
In order to turn the
dream into reality we need to raise £4,500 funds for a three phase planting scheme. We
have approached local aquatic plant providers who have supplied us with costings
for the entire project (plants, containers, anchoring points, and planting
compost) to create a natural, tasteful and self-sustainable pond whilst
restricting the growth of blanket weed. We would also want to update the
The planting would take place over the course of three years from the launch of
the project. The ideal time to start planting is in the spring and our first
target is to raise sufficient funds for phase one by April 2019.
We are hoping to
raise money through donations as well as through fundraising events throughout
the course of the project.
Please follow the link to the Make a donation page
for more information on how you can help.
We have the backing
of the town council who will be monitoring the project throughout. The council
will also be the custodian of any donations or contributions to the project
ensuring that all monies are spent only on the project and financially accounted
Information updates on the
project can be found on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/HorsepondRestorationProject
and the town council website www.castle-cary.co.uk