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About spandit

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    Deepest, darkest East Sussex
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  1. I save all my cherry for cooking on. Don't have any beech but I get by with a mixture of other stuff. Have a lot of ash and oak to supplement the almost unlimited leylandii I have. At the moment, anything that isn't wet from the rain will do!
  2. Mine filled up in a few months but then went right down again (and it's about 15 foot deep!), being almost completely dry the following Summer. I predicted that with all the fissures that had opened in the clay, there would be a massive amount of sediment washed in once the rains started again. It was full to overflowing by last December and despite dropping by a maximum of 6 inches this Summer, it's remained full so has obviously self sealed. May take a few years but it there's clay in the soil, I reckon it will stay full
  3. I find a polite invitation sent to them at several hundred feet per second generally gets a decent acknowledgement
  4. I've hired a 22 tonne petrol log splitter before - might be an option
  5. All of my hazel is grown in rabbit spirals and they've all developed multiple stems. Once coppiced they'll sprout multiple stems anyway. The small tubes will be fine.
  6. Doubted myself so took a tape measure to one of them. 24 inches around at the base - that's nearly 8 inches diameter, so I'm not far off. A lot of them snap in the wind it seems, though but it means my prototype forest floor is collecting detritus which must be beneficial for invertebrates
  7. Normal alder, that's measured at the base, and they're not all like that.
  8. About 5 years. Most of them have split the tube shelters. Haven't tried stringing my hammock in between them yet as it puts a lot of strain on things but they're probably strong enough
  9. I didn't intentionally plant any birch as I have thousands that have seeded naturally, despite the grass. They're shading the grass out in some places, like a proper woodland.
  10. It was the unauthorised engineering works they complained about. The fact they were part of a pond was incidental. That said, it has dragged on and on and is still costing me money
  11. I know what you mean about cutting them (even though the alder was planted to provide firewood in the future). Some of the alder is 8" across - astonishing growth. I will take a few down this winter, I think, to see how well they regenerate. Got so much firewood already I really don't need any more. Saw a squirrel in the woodland today as I was on the tractor mowing the rides - lovely to see. Looking forward to seeing him again, hopefully through a telescopic sight...
  12. They wanted cross sections of how the bund was constructed. A catastrophic failure in the thickest part would flood the house and possibly a couple of the neighbours. It has shown no signs of slumping/eroding and is massively thick at the base (the bottom of the pond being underground anyway). Anyway, they're satisfied with the construction, but the conditions they applied were totally unfair and, in my view, impossible to discharge, so I'm having to pay again to try and vary them. Still threatening with making me fill it in - not sure where all the wildlife or water is going to go... It's stunning in the sunshine as you can see down about 6 feet now it's cleared. Level has dropped over the past couple of weeks due to no rainfall, by about 6 inches. Last year it was down 12 feet!
  13. I didn't ask for planning permission beforehand so had to apply for retrospective permission. I've now got it (after a lot of reports and hassle), but they imposed a load of conditions on it, including getting a professional ecologist to do a report (which was a few hundred quid). I am now trying to vary/cancel the condition but will have to pay another £234 for the privilege - feels like extortion to me but the fee structure is clearly set out on the planning portal. One issue I had is that they wanted detailed plans before and after - I tried explaining that because it was a retrospective application, I didn't have plans before and the pond was designed as we went along, in line with the terrain, so didn't have an accurate plan either. I've had to construct a 3D model of the pond, with contours. Most recently I've sent them an 130 page report showing details of every tree I've planted around it (with coordinates to the nearest cm :o). I've had no objections to the pond (only one neighbour can see it) and even the council member who visited said it didn't look out of place. The council drainage engineer who visited said the bund was well constructed but planning applications generally deal with buildings, not ponds, so the framework they use doesn't really fit. For example, I was asked if there was access for the fire department (in case it catches fire?) and was asked how many parking spaces it would generate... I don't know how remote the land you are looking to buy is - if nobody can see it, then nobody can complain, although there's always Google Earth to snitch on you...
  14. I had a boggy patch of ground so dug a very large hole which has now filled with water. It's about 12' deep in the middle and beautifully clear. Unfortunately, the council did not like the fact that I didn't ask for permission and it's been dragging on for over 2 years now... Not easy to see from this angle but the bank on the bottom left are pretty steep and high. Lovely to swim in (the jetty on the left hand side is now in the water so I can dive in) although the lilies are struggling since the dog keeps trampling them.


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