THE GREEN, GREEN GRASS OF LINCOLN CASTLE

Written on Wednesday 12th January 2011

The Lucy Tower Motte used to be very overgrown with trees and wild shrubbery.  It was decided to cut it right back and grass the banks allowing better views of the castle however lessons were learned the hard way when in 2007 the Westgate was grass-seeded and following a downpour the lot was swept away!  This time a special pre-grown grass has been used.  It has been used for embankments at race courses, to create a tennis court at Trafalgar Square and most bizarrely on the ground floor of the Dorchester Hotel for an awards ceremony!  It is a Crested Hairgrass which is drought tolerant and very slow growing, just 20cm a year. 

 

The turf is grown on a special mat made from recycled British textile fibres, especially designed to retain moisture and give great strength and flexibility.  Laid over plastic, it is grown hydroponically, it is then lifted, mat and all, in 30m lengths and rolled out.  The mat underneath is so strong it has to be cut with an angle grinder and each roll weighs 325 kilos; so logistically the whole job has been a challenge.  One of the many advantages of this product is that it prevents weed growth so it reduces future maintenance.  The turf is unrolled and pegged in place ? by scampering up and down with crampons on!

 

What a fascinating project with a very successful and attractive result that is protecting and stabilising the Castle motte.

 

Extracted from the 16th newsletter from The Historic Lincoln Partnership (HLP).


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