Over 30 years ago the Sawmill in Raincliffe Woods was set on fire and the remains bulldozed down the bank sides of the site. Ever since it has looked a mess with a freezer cabinet, lounge chair, broken equipment, metal sheeting, plastic, a bath and many pieces of the old buildings tipped down the sides.
In just three hours our volunteers filled a skip with rubbish from around the Sawmill site and started tidying up. A massive thank you to our volunteers for all their hard work.
Our volunteers also collected plastic tree protectors which have been scattered around the woodland and also where trees have failed to take. There are still more plastic tubes to collect and hopefully on our next Volunteer Day the 19th October we will have removed almost all. We have also started an experiment to see how well unprotected plantings fair without the plastic tubing. Natural regeneration seems to be occurring throughout the woodland with the deer seeming to favour Ash saplings rather than the beech, sycamore and oak.
For those who have an interest in birding we had a confirmed sighting of a Goshawk skimming the tops of the trees near the Sawmill site which is a positive sign for the woodland.
On our next volunteering day the 19th October we will be focussing on rhododendrons which are starting to shoot back up after the last thinning 2 to 3 years ago. This job is best done when they are young shoots rather than the large bushes.
We also have some acorns to plant out which children could help us with in the woodland.
During the first week of October through the help and support of Thorn Park Farm work was started on improving the drainage on the track from Green Gate Car park up to Osbourne Lodge. The track suffers from the spring water run off above the track but by clearing out the side drainage ditches and unblocking the pipes the track should start to improve. A top dressing of hard core should also help. Once again a big thank you to Thorn Park Farm.
We look forward to seeing you in Raincliffe Woods when we hold another successful Volunteers Day.