Sunday, 21 September 2014
Wood for the trees
Fresh tracks are being laid and new openings cut in Thorpe woodlands, something I've never actually watched there before and something I've dreaded for the last 4 years as, for that time it had seemed this would be the precursor to housing. But the giant machinery that can be heard in to the dusk, lights shining down and through the trees, felling, removing and stacking 50+ year old trees like carefully arranged matchsticks is doing something good.
Paying heed to the warning signs and staying well clear while tons of machinery is felling and moving tons of wood, I've followed the path cut through southern Racecourse plantation. many dozens of trees have gone, but gone only from one of the last remaining stands of conifer.
And what was in places tightly packed rows of pine with little light or life reaching below is now open with well spaced mature conifer retained along with some broadleaved.
A crop of conifer has been removed but the woodland remains and there is no obvious loss to wildlife or biodiversity.
Likewise around the rest of Racecourse where work has taken place, if anything, the variety of habitat will probaly remain and variety of landscape increase.
Clearing and widening, main ride Racecourse wood.
Very little of the broadleaved woodland (making up the majority of the woodland habitat in Racecourse) has so far been affected by the work undertaken and almost none in Belmore. And some care seems to have been taken to retain selected trees to retain the woodland landscape and to avoid unnecessary damage.
Thorpe Woodlands can, and is paying for it's keep with the crop so carefully stacked and sorted in the picture below. At the same time the woodlands is still the great and diverse wildlife habitat that we fought to keep, and across the bulk of it's area it's the same beautiful site for recreation (the area in Racecourse pictured top is definitely more so).
The sustainable and renewable crop that pays for the woodland and wildlife we can keep.
Continued litter picking in Racecourse wood