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Saturday 19 September 11.00am

Open House Festival: Tour of the Moore Brook Green Link

Firs Farm Park and Wetlands, Firs Lane  

Meet at Firs Farm Wetlands Car Park - must be booked in advance

Or do the walk at any time following the route below.

Follow the lost river Moore Brook from the landmark Firs Farm Wetlands to Pymmes Park Wetlands where it meets the Pymmes Brook. You'll see how we've worked with nature to transform the urban parks and streetscape

The Start: Firs Farm Wetlands Car Park

From the car park walk towards the park along the pathway lined with wildflowers. Stop at the grated manhole cover and listen. This is a branch of the lost river Moore Brook. Follow the path until you can see the river seeing daylight beneath the woodland glade. Notice what you see and smell. Pollution from roads and houses in the area flows underground and outfalls into the nearest river - the Moore Brook.

The river was culverted in the 1950s to allow for urbanisation. It has been forgotten about all these years until now. The river drains a catchment of 350Ha and flowed completely underground until 2014 when we started constructing the wetlands.


Firs Farm Wetlands

Wetlands are natural filters, and can filter out a lot of the pollutants found in urban rivers. These include oils and heavy metals from vehicles and our homes.Explore the wetlands. Check out the outdoor classroom and pond dipping areas. Walk along the naturalised channel to the stepping stones. It's hard to believe that this space used to be underused flat grassland!

The wetlands store 30,000m3 of flood water protecting more than 140 properties in Edmonton and the A10. They also improve water quality, provides important habitat for biodiversity and is a great space for the community and schools. More that 2000 school children visited the wetlands during the dedicated "Wonderful Wetlands Week," and volunteer groups (Friends of Firs Farm) continue to cherish and look after the park.

Follow the path to the left and round until you get to a seating area. You may see another grated cover, which is another branch of the Moore Brook river. All the water flows into the wetlands. It used to flow in a culvert running along the path towards the A10. Now 500m of the Moore Brook river has been restored.


To Edmonton

Follow the path out of Firs Farm wetlands to the A10, and cross beneath the A10.Follow the road down, and turn right onto Perry Gardens. Walk down the steps to Bexley Gardens.

You'll pop out at a road called "Deansway," where you'll see rain gardens. The route of the Moore Brook is lined with rain gardens. These help to reduce residual flood risk on the roads, and help filter pollutants from the road that would otherwise end up in the river. They are also being used as horizontal traffic management to reduce traffic speeds.


The Green Link

It's not finished yet, but Bexley Gardens will be lined with rain gardens too. You might notice some manhole covers in the road - you're following the Moore Brook still. Turn right down Haselbury Road, cross through the rain gardens and walk through the Park Lane Pocket Park. You may see a grated cover. Take a peek of the Moore Brook. Go left onto Park Lane and go past the rain gardens.

You may see a large fenced off green space - this will one day be opened up and be another pocket park for people to enjoy and see the river. Cross Sweet Briar Walk into Pymmes Park

When you reach Westerham Avenue, you may see works along a parade of shops. We're using rain gardens here to slow traffic speeds, increase crossing points and also making the environment a lot friendlier to cyclists and pedestrians. Turn left and follow the rain gardens down to the bottom of the road. You'll see some of our rain garden build-outs outside Hazelbury Primary School. The road used to have lots of vehicles parked outside the school and no crossing point. The rain gardens have allowed crossing for school children to be easier and safer and helped all the school children walk the last bit of their journey to school.


Pymmes Park Wetlands

Follow the park path on your right until you get to the wetlands. You're walking on top of the Moore Brook culvert.Walk around the path of the wetlands. What plants and insects can you see? It's hard to believe that this was flat grassland.Walk up the stairs into the outdoor classroom to see the wetlands from another view. walk towards the lower pathway of the lake.

You can see a grated channel taking water from the wetlands and into the lake. See how clean it is! This is where the lost river joins Pymmes Brook.

The four cascading wetland cells treat a catchment area of 294Ha (216Ha of which flow through Firs Farm Wetlands), and provide 5000m3 of flood storage.

Walk down the ramp. You may see a little wall, which used to be part of a World War II shelter. Here's another grated manhole. You may see wooden posts dotted around to tell you the story of the lost river. Here's where it sees daylight again.

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