Season’s Greetings To All Our Readers

December 17, 2016
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David Pottinger writes:

Many thanks for the interest you’ve shown in Fleet Pond Blog this year. We’ve been fortunate in having had over 164,000 visits since it started in July 2008!

We’ve lots of ideas for posts for 2017 that we hope you’ll find interesting, so please stay tuned. Also, if you have any requests for topics, we’d be very happy to hear from you…

Until then, have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


FPS Photo Competition Deadline is 8 January 2017

December 17, 2016

There’s still three weeks left to go through your photos and decide which may be good entries to send in (theme is ‘Seasons’) as well as a few weekends to go round the Pond and capture that special picture!

Why not give it a go?

Details of this year’s competition are (see here for last year’s results):

  • Entry is open to all amateur photographers
  • No entry fee
  • All entries must be received by 8th January 2017
  • “Photographer of the Year” will receive the annually awarded Rose Bowl donated by Fleet Photographic
  • All photographs must have been taken at Fleet Pond Nature Reserve (however please note that the taking of photographs using drones or aerial cameras is prohibited)
  • Up to 4 photographs per person
  • All photographs may be used by FPS for any purpose it chooses

Please send photos by email to photocomp@fleetpond.org.uk

All photographs received will be acknowledged and the winners will be announced at the FPS AGM in February 2017.

The above competition details are also available on the Society’s website together with pictures of winning and commended photos from previous years.


Fleet Half Marathon Supports Fleet Pond

December 10, 2016

YouTube Video of Fleet Half Marathon 2016 (from MikeSpectrum)

David Pottinger writes:

The famous Brooks Fleet Pre-London Half Marathon will take place on Sunday 19th March 2017, starting at 10:30.

Why not put watching this event into your diary, it’s very impressive and has a great atmosphere!

Full details can be found on their website here, which advertises Fleet Pond Society (FPS) as the nominated local charity for 2017:

New for 2017:
  • Revised course – faster, flatter final 2 miles
  • New local charity – Fleet Pond Society – helping to support the natural environment in Fleet. Run for them and make a difference.
  • Brooks event t-shirt available to buy when you enter the race.
  • Medal, re-useable kitbag and other gift for all finishers.
  • More toilets within the park following runner feedback.
  • New race partner ‘Everyone Active’ the management company of the new Hart Leisure Centre opening March 2017.

 Five runners have already volunteered to run for FPS:

  • Dan Franklin
  • Imogen Sutherland
  • Lauren Saxby
  • Shane England
  • James Wicks

and we all wish them well in their preparations for the demanding event next year.

We also have 5 free places left – why not run for Fleet Pond? If you are interested please drop a line to our Chairman, Colin Gray at chairman@fleetpond.org.uk or phone 01252 616183.

We will publish further details nearer the time, including relevant charity giving pages.

FPS will be providing several stewards for the race and will also have a gazebo at the finish at Calthorpe Park Race Village. Please call by on the day if you’d like some information on how FPS benefits the local community.

FPS have been involved with this event previously. In 2015, two runners from Mackenzie Smith Estate Agency, Roxanne Lewington and Tara Skinner, raised £559 for the Pond by participating in the Half Marathon, see here and picture below.

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From L to R: Colin Gray of FPS with Roxanne Lewington, Tara Skinner and Graham Tufnell of Mackenzie Smith


Rushmoor Volunteer Recognition Event and FPS

December 9, 2016

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Rushmoor Mayor Jacquie Vosper with Michael Thompson of FPS

Colin Gray, Chairman of Fleet Pond Society (FPS), writes:

“Last month Michael Thompson and I went to the Rushmoor Volunteer Recognition event at the Rushmoor Council Offices. Michael was presented with a certificate by the Mayor of Rushmoor Jacquie Vosper for his many and varied volunteering activities with Fleet Pond Society.

From the Rushmoor site:

Rushmoor has a rich tradition of voluntary organisations supporting our community. Volunteers are the life-blood of local projects, organisations and charities.

The Celebration Event was held at the offices of Rushmoor Borough Council on Wednesday 9th November 2016 from 12:00 pm to 1.30pm in the company of the Mayor of Rushmoor, Jacquie Vosper. At this event Voluntary Organisations had nominated  a volunteer to attend the lunch with a guest to receive a certificate from the Mayor in recognition of their volunteering activities.

Michael was nominated by FPS for his keen dedication to Fleet Pond. He is a regular at the Sunday work parties at which he is master of bonfire making, joins the Friday morning Last of the Summer Wine volunteers when his work schedule allows and he has hosted visiting children’s’ groups for pond dipping and other educational and fun activities (see example picture below).”

Many congratulations to Michael!

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Volunteer Event This Sunday, 11 December

December 7, 2016

There will be a volunteer event at Fleet Pond this coming Sunday and all are welcome to attend (see below for registering).

Colin Gray, Chairman of Fleet Pond Society, writes:

“Our task for the coming Sunday is an attack on birch and a coppicing of gorse up on the Dry Heath adjacent to the reserve car park.

Assemble as usual at the Countryside Workshop at 9.00 for a 9.15 a. m. start. The soil will not be as muddy but could be wet underfoot so waterproof boots recommended.

This is our last task before Christmas and our tradition has been that anyone who feels in a festive mood can bring along some festive nibbles to share around. This is not an obligation so you will not be turned away, or denied any nibbles, if you cannot make a contribution!”

For further information and booking for this event (which is essential as tools and resources have to be planned beforehand), please contact Hart Countryside Services:

Phone: 01252 623443
 Email: countryside@hart.gov.uk

The Sunday volunteer tasks are supervised by a Hart Countryside Ranger, Nick Macfarlane, together with members of Fleet Pond Society.

A full listing of the Sunday volunteer events for the 2016/17 season can be found here. Why not give it a go?


Secretive Water Rail Seen at the Pond

December 7, 2016

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Local photographer John Sutton grabbed this impressive snap of a water rail on the Pond during the recent icy weather. This is a very secretive bird that lives deep in the reedbeds from most of the year, but emerges into the open when the pond is frozen over. You can get a good idea of its size by the moorhen just behind it!

Further information on the Water Rail here.


End of Algal Bloom Alert

December 7, 2016

Earlier this year, a warning was given of the presence of harmful algal blooms at Fleet Pond (see here).

We are happy to say that the blue green algae has now gone from the Pond as confirmed by the Environment Agency last month.