As Giant Hogweed can be so dangerous to people, causing rashes and burns when it comes into contact with skin, BEACON decided to prioritise this species as one they would tackle first. You can find out more about Giant Hogweed here. It is also easier to prioritise areas for control work as Giant Hogweed doesn’t occur throughout the whole Bollin, catchment, the first record of hogweed is near Manchester Airport, and the infestation gets increasingly worse as your head downstream.
The first area to be tackled on a grand scale was Bankhall Lane in Hale as this was the first area where the Giant Hogweed started to get very dense. Even to be able to treat a relativley short stretch of the river Bollin took a lot of co-ordination and discussion with landowners and private companies such as United Utilities and Network Rail. The map below shows you who treated which areas of the river Bollin. BEACON was able to contribute towards funding contractors to undertake work where the hogweed was very dense or inaccessible. Farmers and landowners treated Giant Hogweed that was in their fields and ditches.
The results of this work have been amazing! In just one season the density of the Giant Hogweed at Bankhall Lane has been dramatically reduced thanks to landowners, contractors and private companies working together and treating the right species at the right time. The photos below show the before and after effects of the work.
This is the pipe line from the sewage works to the river before work started in September 2013, and after work has been completed in September 2014. This work was undertaken by United Utilities and their contractors.
These are the field margins adjacent to the River Bollin at Bankhall Lane. The landowner and contractors have undertaken work here to bring the Giant Hogweed under control. The difference between the two pictures is fantastic!
Thank you to everyone who worked really hard to control the Giant Hogweed here, and we look forward to working together again next year to finish off this invasive nasty once and for all!