Eco Church

St. Mary Magdalene Church, Longfield has registered as an Eco Church.

We are currently working towards obtaining the Bronze award. 

You can find out more information here – Eco Church – An A Rocha UK Project

Our Church Downs graveyard (directly opposite the church) was consecrated many years ago to be a Meadow Churchyard, to encourage as many wildflowers and as much wildlife as possible.

During the month of June we were fortunate enough to have a Wildflower Survey carried out in the Church Downs graveyard, the botanist identified more than fifty flowering plants.  One of the most exciting being the Broomrape, as this is a plant that does not photosynthesize!

We are hoping to also have a Wildlife Survey carried out in the near future.

Please see below the full list of the flowering plants identified by the botanist – Flower Survey June 2024

This has been identified as a Cream-spot Tiger Moth.  This species only lives in the south-east of England.  The eggs are laid on various wild plants which then become the food source for the larvae which feeds from July until autumn when they hibernate.  Photograph courtesy of J Gibbs.

Pyramidal Orchids and a Kidney Vetch

Bee Orchid. Stinging Nettles, Bindweed and Brambles

According to the Royal Horticultural Society, stinging nettles are a food source for over 100 species of invertebrates.  Butterflies, including Peacocks and Red Admirals, lay their eggs on stinging nettles and the resulting larva feed on the leaves.

Unsurprisingly, the Convolvulus Hawk Moth eats the leaves of Bindweed, while the flowers are a food source for bees.

Brambles provide shelter and food for a variety of creatures.  Caterpillars, including the Green Hairstreak and the Holly Blue, eat the leaves while bees feed on the flowers.  Later in the year, birds and mammals eat the fruit. (Blackberries)

The church has a voice on caring for our environment, it does not always use it, but at St. Mary Magdalene and in the RNWK group of churches we believe that it is a voice which should now be distinctive and clear, it is a voice that should be heard and it is a voice that must be heard, because ‘NOW IS OUR TIME TO ACT.