Plant sale! May 7th

Everyone is invited to a plant sale at Rowntree Park, on Saturday May 7th. It will run from 11am to 2pm, and will be located close to the Reading Cafe – look out for our tent! There will be seeds for children to plant (free for members of the Friends). There will be plenty of plants, covering a range of interests, provided by Brunswick Organic Nursery.

meredith stewart 2008

Foxglove: Meredith Stewart 2008

Online tennis court booking

The tennis courts at Rowntree Park are now being managed by the Rowntree Park Tennis club, under an agreement with the council. The public are now able to book and pay for use of the courts online, using the tennis club’s booking system.

Birthday Party 2016

The Birthday Party (aka the Summer Fair) will be on Sunday 17th July. We’re looking forward to another great day, with lots of community stalls, interesting activities, delicious food, fabulous music and much more. If you are interested in organising a stall or having an activity at the Party (or volunteering), please sign up by following this link . For any additional enquiries, please contact Christina, the event manager

New for 2016!

We’re delighted to be able to offer members of the Friends a special deal – 10% off the price of food and drink at the Reading Cafe, in Rowntree Park. This means those delicious cakes, hot drinks and snacks will taste all the more scrumptious!

Members can pick up their personalised 2016 membership card from the cafe, once they have paid their membership fee for the year (still only £5 per household). Payment is by cheque or cash, or by bank transfer (email membership for details). Paper membership leaflets are available at the cafe.

Many thanks to Mel, the cafe manager for arranging this…

Words from a bench 2016

We would like to invite writers to contribute to the new ‘issue’ of the Words from a Bench project. The subject is ‘Midwinter’ and the closing date is March 1st. The full guidelines are available here and the young peoples guidelines are here.
mammatus clouds

Birthday Party, July 12th

This year’s Birthday Party (aka Summer Fair) is on July 12th, from 1-4pm. All are welcome to come and browse the stalls, enjoy the entertainments, take part in the activities, listen to the music and eat delicious street food! Follow the event on Facebook to keep up to date with the developments.

The Friends are looking volunteers to help on the day. Can you help for an hour, or more, with setting up, marshalling or tidying up? Lots of lovely local people needed to make this event safe and fun. Get in touch via this page, the Facebook page or info@

The issue of geese in the park

The Canada geese have had another very successful breeding season and there are dozens of geese families in the park. The geese parents are highly-protective of the baby goslings, and often hiss or peck at anyone who comes too close. This is one of the many reasons that we stress that there are issues in feeding the wild birds in the park. Another important issue is the sheer quantity of droppings, which make the paths and grass unpleasant; ‘goose poo’ in the park is the major source of complaints about the park.

Canada geese were introduced into the country and have no natural predators. Rowntree Park is just one of hundreds of parks and open spaces in the UK that have a problem with too many Canada geese. Like hundreds of other Friends’ groups, the Friends of Rowntree Park discuss the issue of the geese on a regular basis, often collaborating with the Council. In 2010, the Friends and Council worked together to commission and fund a report on the Canada geese.

Careful reading of the report shows that there have been many studies, all seeking to find a way to control geese, or to prevent them from having such an annoying impact on the amenity value of parks and open spaces. It is clear that there is no one simple, cheap and universally-acceptable solution to the problem. Specifically, the Friends are often asked “why can’t the geese just be moved or culled?'”, but the cleared area would swiftly be filled up with geese from elsewhere in the York region. There are a number of possible ways in which some specific areas of the park could be made less attractive to the geese, and these may be something to concentrate on, if practical (and if funds are available).

The Friends are once more revisiting the subject, at the Friends meeting on Thursday 18th June. A member of Council staff will be present. All are welcome to take part in these discussions but we would ask that you read the report before attending, so that we don’t have to spend valuable discussion time, retracing our steps over existing information.


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