A sign of possible good water quality found in the Wom Brook-the above photo taken recently shows a small section of the Brook that flows through Wombourne free of silt, sediment and mud.
This is soon to changeÂ over the next few days with the forecasted rain set to fall and the ensuing run-off of rainwater into the Brook will wash into it, discolour and muddy its water.
Last weekend, members of the Friends Group removed further amounts of Himalayan Balsam (HB) from the banks of the Wom Brook. Bin bags full of the weed are pictured above awaiting collection by South Staffordshire Council.
Why is the is necessary?
Left unchecked, these hardy plants, classified as a hostile species, choke other plants by taking up their growing spaces, and reduce the light available to grasses and plants that water voles usually feed on.Â Much more removal of HB is required, and if you live in Wombourne, and could spare 2 hours per month assisting the Friends of Wom Brook, you’d be most welcome-the Group meets by the picnic benches at the Gravel Hill entrance to the Wom Brook Walk, on the first Saturday and third Thursday in the month.
Although it was sad to see the original willow pruned (pictured above, slightly right of centre, resembling a tall bush), it had become vastly overgrown, and was at risk of some of its larger branches breaking off during high winds.
It is no exaggeration that a large falling branch, weighing half a ton, crashing to the ground as you walk by is a sobering experience, and one not to be recommended!
South Staffordshire Council occasionally face hard choices-either manage the trees along the Wom Brook Walk in the interests of safety, or leave them to go wild, and run the risk of an innocent walker passing beneath an overgrown tree being seriously injured by one of its falling branches.
Before the advent of central heating and double glazing, in past centuries Willow trees growing along the Brook were regularly managed by the residents of Wombourne who harvested them in order to heat their homes and provide fuel for cooking.