Autumn clean-up

October and November are always busy months for OiB, even more so when Covid is causing constantly changing restrictions on how many people can meet out of doors. During this period we do a lot of tidying up. So various individuals managed to get out and tidy up the Charles St car park, a number of planters around town, flower beds on Weston Lane and Bremner Street corner, as well as smaller sites. All socially distanced or keeping in a bubble, of course.

Charles St carpark

Otley in Bloom in a time of Coronavirus

Back in February 2020 OIB were discussing how to celebrate 20 years of OIB, possibly paying for a new seat or planting up the BT building’s garden.  Fast forward just a few weeks and the country was in lockdown with members restricted to their homes and, depending on their health and age, access to regular outdoor exercise.  A very strange time which was made slightly better by some of the loveliest spring weather we have seen.  This lovely weather dried out many plantings around town which could not be supported by Leeds Parks as they had to modify work roles across the city. 

OIB had to change what it does as well.  We have tried to maintain a new Daily Flower posting on Facebook.  Our monthly meetings have moved onto the web in Zoom.  Eventually, lockdown limits were raised enough to allow us to tidy and replant the garden at the Fire Station.  Moving into June/July we decided to help Otley reopen its centre by filling and planting up 32 barrier planters and asked Otley inhabitants to contribute via crowdsourcing (an OIB first).

Watering for Otley

When OIB decided to bring back plants to all the barrier planters (32) around central Otley we hoped we would get a lot of help from companies selling us compost and plants and we were not disappointed. Thank you B&TS and Courtyard Planters.

But we didn’t know what to do about the watering.  Well the kind companies of Otley stepped up to give us a hand, so we really do thank:

JR Sports

Otley Barber

The Original Factory Shop

Otley Action for Older People

The Milk Bar

and Arundel Travel

all of whom have stepped up to give Otley a helping hand.  Thanks.

Birdcage Walk and Granville Terrace

Recently we tidied the planters in the layby on Birdcage Walk, and added a few more plants to brighten them up as they had suffered in the winter flooding there.

We also weeded and tidied the big flowerbed at the bottom of Granville Terrace, which is getting much more light after a tree was felled there. 

Painting and fettling planters

We repainted the green wooden planters around town. We had some new volunteers this time, and got the job done in an hour.

And we fettled some of the others (in case you’re puzzled, fettling is a old Yorkshire word meaning putting something to rights, making it just right, in fact putting it into “fine fettle”.)  So in this case it meant taking out dead plants, picking out litter, trimming and tidying as required.

And afterwards we had coffee and some delicious flapjack – thanks Katie!