The Friends of Haddon Wood

Everything interesting we can think of about Alhampton's community woodland. To leave a comment on a post, click on its title and scroll down…


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Final major planting, December 2013

So, after the community planting days in November, it was the contractors’ turn, this time to finish the job …barring the odd replacement and a few tweaks here and there. December already – though it still feels like early Autumn and pretty much perfect planting conditions which, in my opinion, constitutes any type of weather that doesn’t involve either waders or danger of frostbite. Not only was it the final push, but someone else was going to be planting the remaining 6,000 odd whips, so double bonus. All the rest of us had to do was stroll around with the dogs, admiring someone else’s work, which we did and here, in no particular order, is the result.

Actually, there’s just one more thing and it’s an odd one. Perhaps it’s the contours of the last fields, or the fact that Matt and his team have incorporated sweeping avenues, rather than the straight lines of the first phase, or perhaps it’s that we’ve now got shrubs – like yew and holly¬† – but suddenly there’s a completely new perspective to the wood. Albeit one of plastic tubes, it’s become a proper wood. The sort that, if you squint your eyes, you can imagine in years to come. Not only that, but you can see if from the A371 passing Castle Cary station, which means that it’s arrived in every sense. All we need now is a picture from there to prove it…. Rosie?!

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Planting, Stage 2 – the Community day…

So, the second – and final – stage of planting is underway.

It doesn’t seem that long since the first planting in March, but a world away in terms of planting conditions. I’m glad we didn’t know then how long it would be before we could ditch hats, scarves and gloves and one of the latest Springs on record arrived.This time around it was overcast, but the ground was soft and damp – and a lot warmer, so, hopefully, a good start for these trees.

Keinton Mandeville Primary School started us off on Thursday 14th November, followed by Oaklands Community School the next day and they made a great start between them. Saturday was the open community planting day and it was grim and grey – the sort of day when you might think sensible people would find better things to do inside, maybe by the fire – and really we had no way of knowing how many would turn out. A fantastic 50 did, though and an amazing selection of cakes – thanks to Hil, Liddy, Jessica and Margie – kept us going, so by the end of the session we’d got about 850 whips in the ground. All that despite Network Rail’s (seemingly) endless closure of the A371 between Castle Cary and Haddon Wood too.

This only leaves about 5,650 to go – thank goodness for the contractors who are finishing the job during the course of this week …and for Rose, who took proper pictures.