Back to Milton Locks with a bang

I came back to work this week after some rare time away. I’ve had the following message from volunteer warden and Friend of Milton Locks, Martin Roberts about sightings while I was away.

‘Nice walk around the reserve this morning, bright sunshine, blue sky, gentle breeze coming over the rising tide. Not a lot of birdlife around, starlings, crows, blackbirds and black -headed gulls. Last week we watched a green woodpecker flying around, the first time we have seen one at Milton. There were a few butterflies fluttering around today and I managed to get a picture of this one in the dappled shade near the entrance, I think it’s a Speckled Wood but no doubt an expert will correct me if I’m wrong.’

Speckled wood by Martin RobertsMartin, you are absolutely right! Thank you for sharing.

Yesterday, (Thursday) we tried out a new idea for the Reserve. I was joined by professional archaeologist and Wildlife Trust volunteer, Peter Girdwood. Pete and I led a family event looking for archaeological evidence of the history of Milton Locks. It turned out to be a truly eye-opening morning with an impressive array of discoveries. These included parts of an old butler’s style sink, boat anchors, roof tiles and a large collection of pottery. Among our finds was this large, buried metal bucket.

Rusty bucket cropped by Jess Parsons

Pete told us that a lot of our finds were likely to be from the house boat community in the area during the mid 20th Century and also a nearby Victorian bottle dump. The archaeological discoveries and associated stories and mysteries really captured everyone’s imagination.

I will be back in the area tomorrow at the Milton Picnic on the Green so do come and find me for a chat. For information, my colleagues are working on a replacement for our broken interpretation board which will be coming soon!



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