The Members’ Weekend Including AGM, 2021

WILD FLOWER SOCIETY AGM AND MEMBERS’ WEEKEND 2021

Margam Discovery Centre, Margam Park, Port Talbot, SA13 2UA

Friday 3rd to Monday 6th September

Important Notice

Due to Covid, no decisions about the AGM can be made until information regarding the regulations for Wales becomes available, hopefully before the end of July. At that point, in consultation with the Field Studies Council, the Committee will decide whether the event seems feasible.

If it does, three weeks beforehand, in the middle of August, in line with the current Government Guidelines, the Committee will review the situation. If permitted, the AGM will go ahead only if we feel that it will be safe; members need to be aware that, by attending, they are taking responsibility for their own safety and at their own risk.

If the event is cancelled, we will hold a Zoom AGM, followed by a talk on Saturday 4th September.

Members who have booked to attend will be contacted about these decisions at each stage and information will be posted on the WFS website and social media platforms.

Provisional Programme

The following programme is provisional and may be subject to change.

Bookings by the 20th August 2021 to:

Sheila Wynn, 17 Southfield Drive, West Bradford, Clitheroe, Lancashire BB7 4TU

Email: wfs.gensec@gmail.com or Phone: 01200 425813.

Mobile number for use at the event only: 07875 284334

Catering

When booking please advise of any dietary requirements. Please let me know if you do NOT want to have the buffet lunch/afternoon tea on Saturday and advise of any dietary requirements if you do. A packed lunch will be needed each day.

Evening meals at Margam: If you are not staying at the Field Studies Centre and would like to join us for an evening meal on any day, this may be possible. At the end of August book your meal directly with Lizzie Buckwell at Margam Discovery Centre by phoning 01639 895636. Advise her of any dietary requirements. The cost per meal will be £10, payable in advance. The deadline for booking meals is Friday 27th August.

Transport

When booking please let me know which field meetings you wish to attend and whether you will require transport to the field meetings. Some car sharing will be necessary. If you are coming by car and are prepared to take passengers, bearing in mind Covid safety considerations, please indicate how many you can take.

For those staying at the centre and arriving by train on Friday afternoon, transport from Port Talbot station at 4:00pm can be arranged with the centre.

Friday 3rd September

2 pm: Branch and Competition Secretaries' Meeting The room will be available from 1pm and tea and coffee will be available.

Saturday 4th September

Field Meeting at Ogmore Estuary

1pm: Buffet Lunch at Margam Discovery Centre (to be confirmed) The cost will be £10/person payable on the day.

2pm: AGM followed by a talk on ‘Tristan da Cunha’ by Steve Little and David Albon

If there is no buffet lunch, we hope to have an afternoon tea after the talk.

Although this year’s Photographic Competition has been cancelled, there will be a ‘Shoot and Show’ competition. Entries will be voted on by members present at the AGM.

There will be our usual Plant Identification Quiz, provided by Stephen Clarkson.

This year, if the event goes ahead, there will be prizes for the winner of the Shoot and Show Competition and the Plant Quiz. These will be copies of the book Around the World in 80 Trees and Around the World in 80 Plants, donated by their author, Jonathan Drori.

Evening talks, workshops: If you would like to give a talk or lead a workshop, please contact Sheila Wynn.

Sunday 5th September

Field Meeting at Oxwich Dunes with the option to also visit the north coast of the Gower Peninsula

Monday 6th September

Field Meeting at Nash Point and Limpert Bay, Gileston

Details of Field meetings

For contact on the days of the meetings: Sheila Wynn: 07875 284334

Full travel information and directions to the sites will be circulated nearer the time.

Things to bring...

Wet weather gear, windproof & warm clothes – we are botanising at low altitudes, but the coast could be windy.

Stout footwear - Walking Boots and/or Wellingtons as many of the sites are rocky/ rough and could be wet.

Sunglasses / suncream / hats etc.

Lunch – bring packed lunches on both Sunday and Monday

Saturday 4th September: Ogmore Estuary

Leader to be confirmed. Meet for a 9:30am start in the Ogmore Beach Car Park, Ogmore-by-Sea, Bridgend, CF32 0PW (SS863757). This is a very large car park – park at the western end below the car park entrance. Fee (Feb 2020) - £6. Cash or mobile phone.

Facilities: Toilets at Car Park, Cafe in Ogmore-by-Sea. Also, Garden Centre in Ewenny – toilets & a lovely cafe (opens at 9am serves breakfast and lunch).

Distance from Margam: About 12 miles. Allow about 30 minutes.

Habitat: The walk is approximately 2 miles. The first half will be on the flat sand dune area and the return walk will be along the saltmarsh and some rocky areas. Recommended footwear - walking boots/wellington boots (because of the mud and small sea water pools)

Dangers:

Plants: We will be looking at coastal and saltmarsh species including Sea Heath Frankenia laevis, Buttonweed Cotula coronopifolia, (site of the first sighting in Wales), Glassworts Salicornia spp. One-flowered Glssswort Salicornia disarticulata (formerly S.pusilla), Common Glasswort Salicornia and Purple Glasswort Salicornia ramosissima), Carline Thistle Carlina vulgaris and Musk Thistle Carduus nutans.

Sunday 5th September

Option 1: Spend the day at Oxwich NNR, Gower. Leader to be confirmed

Option 2: Spend the morning at Oxwich and after lunch, move on to Cors Llanrhidian Marsh on the north coast of the Gower. There is limited parking here so car sharing will be necessary for those choosing this option.

For both options, meet for a 10:30am start in the car park at Oxwich Bay Car Park, SA3 1LS (SS501865).

As you enter Oxwich, the large car park is on the left. The fee is £5 (Sept 2019) cash only. Pay attendant at entrance. From the entrance, go under the height restriction barrier and immediately park on the right or left next to the bank (farthest from the beach).

Facilities: There is a cafe and outside toilets on the opposite side of the road to the car park. Cafe opens at 9am. There is a cafe and separate public toilets on the beach front, but they do not have regular opening hours.

Distance from Margam: 26 miles. Allow about 1 hour. Roads on the Gower can be narrow, with few passing places and down to one lane in places. You may also have to contend with farm vehicles and caravans. On return to Margam, allow more time for journey. Traffic from Blackpill through Swansea could be heavy (especially in good weather because of day trippers from the Mumbles & the Gower) and possibly heavy traffic on the M4 at Port Talbot.

Habitat: Large sand dune area bordering the sea. Some trees. Paths are fairly level being of hard grass or soft sand. A couple of muddy paths. About 3-4 miles. Walking boots recommended.

Dangers:

Plants: We shall be looking at the coastal and sand dune flora including, Dune Gentian Gentianella amarella ssp. occidentalis (formerly Gentianella uliginosa), Autumn Gentian Gentianella amarella ssp. amarella, Autumn Lady’s-tresses Spiranthes spiralis, Broad-leaved Helleborine Epipactis helleborine, Sea Rocket Cakile maritima, Sea-holly Eryngium maritimum, Soapwort Saponaria officinalis, Common Gromwell Lithospermum officinale, Ploughman’s Spikenard Inula conyzae, Carline Thistle Carlina vulgaris, Fragrant Evening-primrose Oenothera stricta, and Eyebright species Euphrasia spp.

Option 2. Meet at Cors Llanrhidian Marsh (National Trust land) (SS508939) Post code for The Dolphin Public House, 4 Mill Lane, Llanrhidian. SA3 1ER Car Parking: Limited. Free. Facilities: None. Distance from Oxwich: About 8 miles. Allow about 25 mins.

Habitat: Saltmarsh. Dry Mound

Plants: Saltmarsh species including: Marsh-mallow Althaea officinalis (abundant), Sea Wormwood, Sea Aster Tripolium pannonicum (formerly Aster tripolium), Golden-samphire Limbardia crithmoides (formerly Inula crithmoides), Glassworts Salicornia spp - One-flowered Glsswort Salicornia disarticulata (formerly Salicornia pusilla), Common GlsswortSalicornia europaea, Purple Glsswort Salicornia ramosissima, Yellow Glsswort Salicornia fragilis, and lots of Beaked Tasselweed Ruppia maritima.

Return journey: Distance to Margam. 27 miles. Time 45mins (probably longer as traffic is usually heavy at the 50mph section on the M4 from about Junction 42 past Port Talbot)

Return Journey: Distance to Margam. 27 miles. Time 45mins

Monday 6th September

Site 1: Nash Point, Marcross and Limpert Bay, Gileston, Leader to be confirmed

Meet for a 10:30 start in the car park at Nash Point. Post code CF61 1ZH (SS916683) There is a large car park. Fee £3 cash (Sept 2019). Pay attendant at barrier & kiosk. The owner will open up the large field for us. Go through the barrier and park – watch out for rabbit holes!

Facilities: Cliff top: small shop and cafe in the kiosk. Toilets. Lunch: There is no need to carry your lunch. Depending on the timing, we will either eat it before setting off for the next site or when we get there.

Distance from Margam: About 20 miles (via A48). Allow at least 40 mins

Habitat: Limestone cliff top. Level ground with some tarmac path. The walk is about ¾ mile in each direction, if we stop at the lighthouse.

Dangers: All the cliffs here are Blue Lias and are very dangerous and unstable. There are sheer drops to the shore.

Plants: This is one of the few sites for the rare Tuberous Thistle Cirsium tuberosum as well as species such as Woolly Thistle Cirsium eriophorum, Wild Cabbage Brassica oleracea var. oleracea, Betony Stachys officinalis and Elecampane Inula helenium.

Site 2: . Limpert Bay, Gileston, Vale of Glamorgan.

Meet in the free car park at Limpert Bay Nearest Post Code CF62 4HX (ST019663). We may have to double park. Take care at entrance to the car park – it is rough with potholes and as at Feb 2020, large pebbles from the sea bank have been placed over part of the entrance road. If we have had a lot of rain, there will be some large puddles.

Facilities: No facilities.

Distance from Nash Point: 9 miles. Allow about 20 mins

Habitat: Pebble ridge with loose pebbles next to the sea and a track along edge of field – it could be muddy. Dry saltmarsh.

Dangers: Care is needed on the loose pebbles.

Plants: Red Hemp-nettle Galeopsis angustifolia is just a few yards from the Car Park, Black Horehound Ballota nigra, Autumn Lady’s-tresses Spiranthes spiralis. At the saltmarsh – possibly Parsley Water-dropwort Oenanthe lachenalii, Tall Sea-lavender Limonium procerum, Slender Hare’s-ear Bupleurum tenuissimum. At Summerhouse Point (about ½ hour walk), the only Glamorgan site for Deadly Nightshade Atropa belladonna.