Monday, October 22, 2012

Abrahams Wood, Boars Hill, 13th October 2012

This was our first session back at Boars Hill for some months. We have always enjoyed coming here, and on this cold, but unexpectedly fine morning ,before proceeding down to the wood we could admire the splendid view over Oxford, just as Matthew Arnold would have done 150 years ago.

The site is owned by the Oxford Preservation Trust and managed by BBOWT and we were to meet a new leader Andy Gunn, who would direct the morning's tasks. The main task was cutting down laurel bushes, which grow all over the wood. The wood was once part of a private garden and was donated to the OPT and this is the reason for the large amount of laurel. The idea is eventually to return the wood to a more natural state. There was also an opportunity to coppice the hazels and put aside the straightest branches for future use.

We had just got back to work after our tea break when Eluned, from the Oxford Preservation Trust, arrived bringing delicious cookies and we had no objection to a further snack. Shortly before our session finished, there was a sudden sharp shower, and we were glad to be under the shelter of the trees. 

We arranged to return in four weeks time to carry on the work by ourselves. This extra session came at just the right time as our two scheduled sessions at Caldecott School had been unexpectedly cancelled .
-Eleanor

James coppicing hazel
Cutting laurel
 

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