Nicole Fallon

Windsor and Maidenhead

2Good deeds

2runs

1cheers

Nicole Fallon went on a community mission
Community mission
Windsor and Maidenhead

Ockwells That Ends Well

Thu 17 Sep
Report written by Sophie Lack

11 runners met in the car park at Ockwells park on this fine sunny evening. Nadège was joining us for her second ever GoodGym task (we hope you had fun Nadege)! We set off on the 1km journey across to the fenced off enclosure where we would be meeting "Ranger Al" from Braywick Nature Centre, to learn how to plant the 800+ acorns that we had harvested in the previous tasks, and that that had passed the float test!

The Aces of Spaces

We set to work in two pre-marked out squared off areas with gardening gloves, spades and acorns! We made a slit in the tough ground with our very large spades (not sure about anyone else but Sophie had it in her mind we would be using tiny shovels!) and dropped in 2 or 3 acorns, lying on their sides, about 1-2 inches beneath the surface.

Purpose is Planting a Tree Whose Shadow Your Kids Will Rest Under

We learned that the wooded areas nearby are called "Little Thrift Wood" and "Great Thrift Wood" and the new forest that we are contributing to with our acorn planting efforts will be called "New Thrift Wood". Ranger Al said maybe if we help every week, we could name it the "GoodGym Wood" - a challenge we may gladly accept! How exciting that we are planting a whole new forest for our future generations and wildlife to enjoy!

A Totally Normal Conversation

During our planting session there was much debate around whether the acorns have hats or pants - you know - the little cup on the top of the acorn where it hangs from the tree? It's actually called a "Cupule" but after a democratic vote it was 5 votes to hats and 4 votes to pants. Sorry team pants!!

From Tiny Acorns Do Mighty Oaks Grow

So whilst this feels like a slightly surreal sort of task, planting trees that won't be fully grown for another 200 years, they should start to sprout in around April-May next year. So keep a lookout! "New Thrift Wood" (aka "The GoodGym" wood) will be in it's glory in only a couple of centuries time! Not that long to wait eh?! We even got to see a real life tiny little sprouted oak before we left (see photos) - as Oak Tree babies go, it was a cutie!

Squat's Next?

After the task we said our goodbyes to the ever so knowledgable "Ranger Al", who took all the equipment back to his car, and the rest of us set off for the 1km run back to the car park. Some members squirelled home whilst 6 others stayed for a short HIIT session led by Sophie, with a mixture of cardio, strength, balances and strectching! Everyone did a great job and Nicole treated us with KitKats, Twix and Celebrations at the end - you can DEFINITELY come again Nicole!!

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Nicole Fallon signed up to a community mission
Community mission
Windsor and Maidenhead

Planting GoodGym harvested acorns in Ockwells Park

Thu 17 Sep 18:15 pm
Ockwells Park, Maidenhead, SL6 3YX
More trees = more oxygen!

By the 17th of September we will have had 2 sessions of harvesting acorns, with over 1,000 being collected in the first session already, so there will be lots of planting to be done!

The plan is to meet at the Ockwells Park car park at 6:15pm ready to walk/run over to the planting site (approx 1km from the car park) where we will meet Alastair from Braywick Nature Centre to show us how and where to plant the acorns that he's been safely keeping moist and germinating at home.

Please bring your own gloves suitable for the task, as well as a headtorch as it's now getting darker a lot earlier. Conditions underfoot can be sludgy and uneven so make sure you are wearing suitable footwear.

We look forward to seeing you there!

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Nicole Fallon has has earned their community cape by completing their first community mission. Wed 9 Sep 2020

Nicole completed a community mission. Instead of watching TV or lying in bed, Nicole was out there making their community a better place to be. For making that choice they have earned the community cape.

Nicole Fallon has done their first good deed with GoodGym. Wed 9 Sep 2020

Nicole is a now a fully fledged GoodGym runner. They've just run to do good for the first time. They are out there making amazing things happen and getting fit at the same time.

Nicole Fallon went on a community mission
Community mission
Windsor and Maidenhead

A squir-really lovely evening!

Wed 9 Sep
Report written by Amy Lovell

This evening 9 GoodGymers headed into Ockwells Park for our second acorn harvesting community mission. Click here to read Sophie's run report all about last week's tree-mendous effort (1099 acorns harvested!) and to learn how to identify different varieties of oak trees by looking at their earlobes...yes, really, be-leaf it or not!

A big welcome to Nicole, who joined us this evening for her first session. Nicole works for Coop as the Member Pioneer for Maidenhead. This role is all about supporting local causes and bringing the community together, so very much aligned with GoodGym's values. She is really keen to support GoodGym through her work, and she gave us chocolate and bottles of water, so she can definitely come again!

We met at the Ockwells Park car park at 7pm, had a good natter, then ran 500m or so into the woods to meet Alistair from the Braywick Nature Centre. Thank you to Sara and Jess for back-marking, although you can see from the synchronised flying feet in the photos that they were hardly dawdling!

It was great to see Alistair again and he re-capped for us the aims of the acorn game:

  • pick the pale green or golden ones, the bigger the better!

  • avoid the little ones, brown ones, furry ones, ones with strange protrusions (caused by those cheeky gall wasps), holes, or cracks.

  • don't fall in the ditch.

  • take them home and plant them (instructions in Sophie's report from last week), give them to Alistair to squirrel away into pots or keep moist, and/or come back next Thursday to plant them in the ground at Ockwells (sign up here!)

  • Fast forward in your imagination to the year 2220 and marvel at the beautiful forest of mighty oaks that you have helped restore, and the wonderful wildlife they support.

A squirrel in the canopy above listening to Alistair's briefing was a bit miffed that we were going to steal his acorns, so he pelted some at our heads. But we were not galled (geddit!? Really scraping the oak barrel for puns this week...) and we set out on our mission under lovely pastel skies.

While we walked, talked and picked we fell into a peaceful rhythm, getting in touch with our hunter-gatherer roots. And as Alistair pointed out,

What better exercise for the body and tonic for the mind than the gathering of fruit, an activity as ancient and innate for humans as the species itself.

Alistair is very wise. He also casually quoted the Greek proverb:

A society grows great when old men plant trees in whose shade they know they shall never sit.

Perhaps we should ask him to write the run report next time!

By 8pm the sun had set, head-torches and variations there-of were donned, and we congregated to present Alistair with 4 buckets of lovely acorns. That's acorn-harvesting ticked off the bucket list then!

Then the bats came out and did a little victory air show for us. Fascinating bat fact of the evening: the phrase 'blind as a bat' is simply, well, batty! These amazing flying mammals actually have very good eye sight, as well as having highly sensitive hearing skills.

It was a lovely atmospheric run back by torchlight, once again with Jess and Sara making sure no one was left behind. Thank you ladies! Back in the car park, Amy led a quick fitness session before we scoffed Nicole's generous offering of chocolates and water. Then it was time to make like an oak tree and...leaf, making sure everyone had a safe route home.

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Nicole Fallon signed up to a community mission
Community mission
Windsor and Maidenhead

Harvesting acorns at Ockwells Park again

Wed 9 Sep 19:00 pm
Ockwells Park, Maidenhead, SL6 3YX
Channel your inner squirrel and help grow the mighty oaks of the future

Working with the team from the Braywick Nature Centre, we will meet in the car park at Ockwells Park, walk or run into the woods, collect buckets of acorns and then bring them back to the car park. It's going to be squir-really great fun!

What will happen to the acorns next?

They will be planted either directly into the ground or into pots to ensure a good supply of oaks for planting in the coming years. If you would like to take a few home with you, you can plant them and nurture them for a couple of years until they are ready for planting out on a future GoodGym mission.

As the nights start to get darker, please remember your head torch. You may also be asked to bring a bucket....watch this space for updates!

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