Welcome to Alexandra Park

Looking towards the Farmers Market area

The Friends of Alexandra Park work to promote and protect Alexandra Park - the grounds around Alexandra Palace in North London.

Alexandra Park was originally designed by Alexander McKenzie, in 1863, as a park and pleasure ground. 

The 196 acres of park now consists of a delightful mixture of informal woodland, open grassland, formal gardens and attractions such as the boating lake, cafes and the pitch-and-putt course.

Friends Tweets

  • The Friends Events calendar  includes walks and talks about trees, bats, fungi, moths, insects, birds and the history of Alexandra Park. Also, opportunities to join our work parties in the park.

Information Centre, until Autumn 2018, is open every Sunday, and the first Saturday in the month, 2pm - 4pm.

Green Flag and Green Heritage Award retained

We are very pleased to hear that Alexandra Park has retained its Green Flag Award for 2018. This is due to the effort of the Park Manager, Mark Evison, the Trust's staff and volunteers, the Park Contractors, John O'Conner and ourselves! Picture courtesy the Park and Palace Trust.

Friends Events

Bat Walk

Monday, 17th September 6:45pm

If you haven't seen bats, or have seen them before but just enjoy watching their incredible aerial acrobatics, please join me on Monday evening September 17th, at 6.45pm. You should have a good view of the bats before it gets really dark, and after that you can listen in to their echolocation 'squeaks' with bat detectors. You will also learn a bit about bats - what they eat, where they live and what they look like.

Numbers are limited so you need to register, by emailing allyparkn10@gmail.com
stating how many people you would like to book for, and we will email back the details of where to meet. Please include a phone number so that we can let you know if we have to cancel because of bad weather.
The walk is free, and will last until about 8.00 pm.

Conservation Work Party

Tuesday, 18th September 10am to 12:30pm

Wonder if the butterflies will still be around in the Butterfly Meadow.... Last month we saw this Artist's Bracket fungus pictured left. 

Bramble and tree sapling removal will be the order of the day.

Do join us if you are free. No special skills required; enjoy exercise, plenty of fresh air and good conversation. Bring gardening gloves and secateurs if you have them, but if not we have a variety of tools you can use. 

We usually work from 10 am to 12.30 pm, but come for as long as you want. Meet at the Butterfly Meadow, if you know it, or at the finger post where the path from North View Road meets the Lower Road at 10 am.

Members' Walk: Plant Galls

Saturday, 13th October 11am to Noon

This month we will take a look at some of the weird and wonderful growths that appear on trees and other plants.

Most people have heard of Oak Apples which are not apples at all, but caused by a gall wasp. The oak has many types of gall with lots of knopper galls underfoot at this time of year. (picture)

On the leaves we will see silk button gall, spangle galls and smooth spangle galls.

Galls can be caused by insects, mites, fungi, bacteria.....

Where will we be meeting? Still working on that - will post at least a week before.

Want to see some pictures of galls taken in the Park follow this link.

Friends' Past events

Details of many of our previous events can be found here

These are the most recent events:

Autumn 2018 Bird Walk and Ringing Display

Not a huge turn out this year for the walk and unfortunately no rare birds!

We saw plenty of the usual magpies, crows, robins and the noisy parakeets....

Highlights this year were a greater spotted woodpecker in the Grove, starlings and goldfinches near the pitch and putt hut, a great crested grebe on the reservoir and house martins over the reservoir.

Bird ringing was also slow with only a robin being ringed (and the group missed that!).

It's all down to the vagaries of chance - I suppose - and next time, we will be back to a more spectacular list of birds seen.

More on previous bird walks here.

Family Bug Hunt

A rush of last minute bookings contributed to a very successful Bug Hunt. Large and Small White butterflies were found as well as three different species of ladybird; Harlequin, 16 spot and the 24 spot (pictured left).

Shieldbugs were also scooped up including Green Shieldbugs, Bishop's Mitre Shieldbugs and Dock Bugs.

Roesel's Bush Cricket and Common Field Grasshoppers were found in the grass.

Spiders of all sizes were found including a particularly smart Garden Spider.

Rebecca explained to us that Ichneumon Wasps are the more primitive forms with the social wasps evolving more recently.

Earwigs were also found and we were told that the females look after their young.

One attendee was not so interested in the finds and had to entertained in other ways.

What else was found? Red spider mites and caterpillars as well as some other beetles.

Great Fete

The Friends had a stall at The Great Fete (the new name for the Summer Festival). We offered the opportunity for kids to make Butterfly Crowns (top pic). This was impressively popular and we actually ran out of raw materials half an hour before the close, but not before 65 kids had gone off very happy with their creations.

To test the kids and the adults, we had a Tree Leaf Quiz (middle pic) with leaves from Lime, Weeping Willow, Holly, Sycamore, Silver Maple and Cherry. This gained in popularity with trees close to stall being labelled to help the learning process. Some children were impressively knowledgeable.

Our final activity (bottom pic) was a photo quiz (link to the questions and answers). There were twelve pictures of the Palace and a map with 12 locations. It was "just" a question of matching them up.... Lots of puzzling, but eventually two people out of over fifty participants got all the questions correct and the tiebreaker had to come into operation.
The quiz is, at present, on display in the Park Information Centre in The Grove open this Sunday, 2pm to 4pm.

What else was going on? Lots! The whole event was concentrated, this year, on the South Slope and in spite of some worry about having stalls on a slope, it worked really well. There was lots for kids to do and most of it free (as were our activities). Music in various places of all types Brass Bands and original work from locals as well as more "commercial" stuff. The Streat Life food and drink
festival was up on the Terrace.

An example of the other stalls included the Friends of Alexandra Palace Station, Thrillseekers, Friends of Ally Pally Theatre, Viva City, Wild about our WoodsTryhard Clowns. Next to our stall was Haringey Council promoting healthier lifestyle and allowing people to mix their own drinks via pedalling a cycle.

Later on there was a film on the South Slope "The Dream Girls".

On-going events

The Conservation Volunteers

August 2018

The theme for TCV work in August was the cutting back of the Cherry Laurel by Alexandra Palace Way near the entrance to The Grove. A first session of this hedge reduction had already been undertaken by corporate volunteers. 

A lot of sawing and chopping took place and this will now allow a lot more light into the area. The removed branches were loaded up and removed by the Park Contractors, John O'Conner.

Next date will probably be Wednesday, 19th September where this work is expected to be finished off. Book yourself in using the contact information below. Starts at 10am.

Check here for updates, or contact Tom Nandi our BAT East Project Officer, email t.nandi@tcv.org.uk or call on Tel: 07917 267 573. for more info. 

They carry out various conservation tasks such as pond clearance, building foot bridges, planting trees, and opening glades to increase bio-diversity.

Items which originally appeared on this Home page, may have been moved to other pages, such as Park Issues and Previous Events in the Park. 

Please explore our other pages - scroll up, and see the menu across the top of the page.

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