The County Council installed the original barrier scheme around the ford at Moyles Court nearly ten years ago to stop vehicles parking all over the SSSI designated verges; it was also intended to separate the cars from where people picnicked and played around the stream. However, from the outset, the low barriers were prone to breaking and being knocked out of the ground, particularly when up against a sturdy vehicle!
Due to the wear and tear the cost of repairs has increased year on year, and the Parish Council felt the time had come when it would be more cost-effective to replace everything, and take the opportunity to improve the layout and make it look more like other New Forest parking and protection schemes. With the help of a generous grant from the Hanson Concrete Charitable Trust, we have now been able to do it.
Having agreed with Natural England and the National Park Authority that a radical re-design of the parking areas would not appropriate, at first glance it may look as if the barriers have just been replaced by dragons’ teeth. However, all the bays are now slightly larger, to take account of cars having got a bit bigger in the last ten years; the splays have been re-shaped to make it easier to get in and reverse out; and adding more posts with high-level reflective markers is intended to take the guesswork out of where the teeth are.
The verge barriers opposite Moyles Court School, and round the corner into Ellingham Drove, have been removed and replaced by a ditch and bank divider. This will very quickly start to grass over as the seedbed was left in situ, so by next year should all be returning to green. To the south of Dockens Water, dragons’ teeth have replaced the barriers.
The final phase of the works will be to resurface the worn out and heavily pot-holed parking areas with local hoggin.
Our thanks to Gary North and his team at the Forestry Commission for the quality of the finished scheme and the incredible speed they carried out the makeover. Compared with the weeks of negotiation and getting approval that went into the planning, putting it all in place took just a few hours!