Tuesday 17th September 2019
Last week saw representatives from Councils and Universities from across the UK come together at the Pictorial Meadows HQ in Sheffield for a day-long masterclass on Urban Meadows. As more cities, towns, and communities choose urban meadows as landscaping solutions that meet a wide variety of needs, the day offered delegates the chance to network with others planning meadow projects, access the specialist knowledge of the team at Pictorial Meadows, and explore a site full of floral meadows.
“We started running our Meadow Masterclass sessions a few years ago, but this year have seen a huge rise in demand for the event” says Jonathan Wild, Commercial Director at Pictorial Meadows. Alongside speakers from the company, the day included a talk from Professor Nigel Dunnet from the University of Sheffield on the future of planting in public places, and the differences between urban meadows and rural conservation meadows.
For many people, Nigel explained, an urban meadow offers the opportunity for the reintroduction of something very naturalistic looking into what can sometimes be an unforgiving city environment. The research and work completed by Pictorial Meadows has enabled urban meadows to be economically created in areas ranging from small raised flower beds to 8 mile central reservations, offering improved biodiversity and pollinator food availability whilst providing dazzling, colourful displays for passers-by.
Sue France, CEO at Pictorial Meadows, described the company’s own origins, starting out 20 years ago as a research project to understand how meadow-like communities of plants might flourish within the urban environment and how, under the ownership of the Community Interest Company Green Estate, the organisation has combined it’s meadow knowledge with a social mission to improve lives through landscapes. This mission has seen the organisation transform areas of significant social depravation using meadows, and provided resources for teachers and educators to help build understanding of and connection with our environment.
As urban meadows continue to grow in popularity, both as public landscaping solutions as well as in private spaces, Pictorial Meadows are finding new ways to share their knowledge and help people and organisations to realise the benefits of urban meadows. “As well as our Meadow Masterclasses, we are working on digitising our knowledge to make it available online, and we also offer a CPD session that we can deliver at your location to help introduce a wider team to urban meadows” says Jonathan Wild. For more information, or to book a CPD session, you can visit the company website (www.PictorialMeadows.co.uk) or contact them by phone on 01142 677 635.