The Bradway Action Group (BAG) is progressively improving the biodiversity and attractiveness of three interconnected fields (known as the ‘Bradway Rec’) that were almost entirely laid to grass. In consultation with the Sheffield Council Parks & Countryside team, BAG has sown wildflowers in the smallest of the three spaces with a mixture of native and non-native, perennial and annual species – combining use of the council’s mechanical digger for turf removal and Y3 school children living out part of their curriculum. The wildflowers grew abundantly, and social media posts and word of mouth encouraged more people to visit the site and benefit from the open space.
The next adjoining field is used for junior football, so the general plan is to simply leave the wide margins un-mown. The connection to the third field suffers from poor drainage, however, so the intention in this section is to create a pond, plant suitable trees to absorb surplus water and lay a causeway to maintain the public right of way – all currently subject to an initial ecological study. The final field is used for picnicking and ad hoc games, so the initial plan is similarly to leave wide un-mown margins to improve biodiversity.