Wild Wood Group
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The Wild Wood group is made up of people who feel passionately that we all benefit from contact with wild spaces, providing a sense of connection with the countryside, a space to walk and exercise and to experience nature.
These green spaces provide a haven for wildlife and contribute to maintaining the biodiversity of our countryside.
Although the intention is to create a woodland which both villagers and wildlife will see as a “wild wood” this does not mean that the area can just be left to its own devices. Any useful habitat needs to be carefully managed and it is surprising how much work has to go into maintaining and developing most nature reserves.
Please help us in our work: take any litter home – clean up after your dog but most of all, enjoy Walsham Wild Wood.
Since 2012 the Walsham Wild Wood steering group has leased a field from the Old Town Trust. The wood is located just behind the allotments. The aim of the group is to safeguard the long term future of wood for the generations to come.
With help from lots of people in the village and the Open Gardens Weekend, the group has been improving the village environment by organising the planting and the maintenance of this hectare of land, restoring it to woodland by planting only native species (trees or shrubs) which will ultimately create an authentic native wild wood.
The wood is estblishing well and in a few years’ time it will be a proper wood and a real asset for the community. Lots of people walk through it and of course the school use it as a teaching space through their Forest School programme .
The last of the gaps were filled in the autumn of 2017. The group carry out regular maintenance and planting work and always welcome new members who wish to be involved in realising the goal of the project.
Year by Year
The Wild Wood group announce plans for the planting of the second phase of the Wild Wood from the autumn of 2022, in collaboration with The Old Town Trust charitable owner of and adjacent 2 acre parcel of land.
The initial outline plan is the creation of a link with the allotments by creating an area of edible wild planting; to continue the church ride; to create a fritillary and wild flower meadow and to plant wooded areas of the most successful species from the original planting to connect the two areas.
Working with village residents the group will create further green space whilst also
supporting the charitable aims of the Old Town Trust which include protecting the environment, conservation and heritage.
With thanks to Geoff Pollard who has very generously donated a lovely bench to the Wood in memory of his father, Bernard Pollard.
The bench has a super view down to the church where Bernard Pollard was a church warden for many years.
The photo shows Geoff and his sister Valerie with her dogs taking full advantage. The Wild Wood group are thrilled to have this new addition to the seating at the wood. Come and enjoy it too.
The first Easter Egg Hunt was held on a glorious sunny day and was enjoyed by all the children attending who ran around following the trail leading to the eggs.
Children attending the Midsummer Tea party masde the most of the environment and made some wonderful natural decorations.
The Wild Wood were delighted to entertain the WI to an evening walk and talk. There was lots of chat over nibbles and everyone was shown how to do some simple whittling.
Langham Nurseries joined the Wild Wood for Gardens Weekend setting up woodland craft demonstrations and selling their plants and vegetables and walks around the Wood were organised.
The autumn work morning was a success and finalised the sponsored planting programme.
The group built an entrance to the wood. Designed by John Stebbing, it is loosely based on the lychgate to the cemetery. The oak frame was installed by John, Richard Belson and Alison Martin. John, Alison and Constance Whitaker carved text on three of the cross beams. This construction was built with a generous donation from the Clark Bradbury Charitable Trust, together with a donations from the Walsham Open Gardens Weekend and Waitrose.
The late Dr. Alec Russell was a loyal supporter of the project from its inception and a bench was made and installed at the Wild Wood to celebrate the Queen‘s 90th birthday and as a tribute to Dr Russell in recognition of his enthusiastic help and support.
The group were delighted to add a plaque to the bench in acknowledging Dr Russell’s support for the project.
Walsham Wild Wood is for everyone – if you would like to help do join us!
Regular open mornings have continued for planting and maintenance. The group meets regularly to discuss and plan what needs to be done next. The group is grateful to Richard Belson who maintains the Wood in between the organised mornings. The also benefits from the donation of bark mulch by David Brown.
A Sponsor a Tree Scheme was introduced for a while and this was very successful in involving families and individuals with the wood.
The group have created the Forest School area at the far top corner of the wood for visits from the school.
This includes two tarpaulin posts for the school’s tarpaulin for shelter for the pupils.
Marshmallow roasting and poppy sowing mornings are popular events amongst local school children.
The inaugural planting. A wonderful group of people turned out and 420 saplings were planted having been donated by the Woodland Trust.
These included an oak sapling from the Sandringham Estate to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
This was planted at the top of the main ride by Luke Sargeant, a pupil at the school.
Walsham-le-Willows Primary School won a Lottery Grant of £4,500 to create a local woodland. The school also received a grant of £500 from the Walsham Open Gardens Weekend for the same project.
Daniel Moore, a pupil at the school, won the competition to design the logo (at top of page) for the woodland.
In conjunction with the Green Light Trust a steering committee from the local community was set up and the work began.
AGM | 4 pm Sunday 27th June | Tea and cakes | Everyone welcome
Summer Picnic and Pizzas | 4 pm Saturday 10th July | Everyone welcome
WI Visit | Early evening visit on 11th August | Walk and presentation by WWW
Scythe Workshop | 10 am – 3 pm Saturday 11th September | Professional course £ 15 per person including lunch
Pumpkin week | Collect pumpkins to carve and put in the Wood | Judging on Sunday 31st October and lit walk through the Wood in the evening
FRIENDS OF THE WALSHAM WILD WOOD has been established to facilitate individuals, families and organisations in committing to a regular payment to support the wood which helps to meet the running costs. By donating a minimum of £1 per month you become a Friend of the Wild Wood. Bequests are also very welcome if that would be more appropriate to your circumstances. All donations are much appreciated.
Account number: 87777177 | Sort Code: 60-04-16 | Account name: Walsham Wild Wood | Reference: “Friend”
Lorna MacKinnon | 01359 259140
Richard Belson | 01359 258868