National Tree Planting Event Sat. 30th November 2019 (and 13th December!)
Saturday 30th November was a gloriously sunny but frosty winter’s day and we were the focus for our area’s National Tree Planting Day. This was part of National Tree Week and the Big Climate Fightback with mass participation and events across the country. Lancaster City Council are working with The Woodland Trust to plant 1 million trees in this area!
The Friends of Miss Whalley’s Field worked with the Council to enable the Field to benefit from this campaign. The Council supplied hundreds of saplings (birch/rowan/black poplar/oak/spindleberry/holly etc.) carefully chosen to create a diverse and attractive environment for wildlife including bees and butterflies, birds, small mammals and insects.
The large group of volunteers were not only locals. Some travelled from Silverdale, Caton, Galgate and even Preston.
Under the guidance of local expert David Redmore, our enthusiastic volunteers were shown how to plant saplings. Several hundred were planted in a few hours.
The day was such a success (it even featured in The Westmorland Gazette!) that another was quickly arranged. On Friday 13th December, and at very short notice, two dozen volunteers turned out on a soggy December morning to continue the work. Hundreds more trees were planted plus several sacks of narcissi bulbs to provide spring colour next to the main pathway further up the field.
The trees have been planted in the bottom left hand quarter of the field between the main mown pathway and the River Midge (better known as ‘the stream’!).
The newly planted area will be named Jean Argles Wood. Jean is the Great Niece of Miss Whalley who left the field to the people and children of Lancaster. Jean Argles lives in the Lancaster area and has supported several of the events on the field.
In Spring 2020 we shall begin to see the fruits of our community’s efforts when the first leaves appear and the trees start to grow. Many local people have been keen to see more trees on the field and this is a big step towards increasing the diversity of flora and fauna. The plan is that in about 5 years the progress of the wood will be reviewed and a significant number of young trees will be removed to allow the strongest to develop into a really attractive mixed woodland of native trees. This will be a real asset to the area and to local wildlife.
Congratulations and thanks to all who contributed and supported this very worthwhile initiative. Now it’s up to us all to look after our new wood!
Note: For anyone interested, there will also be a tree planting day at 9am on Friday 24th January at Newton Beck (the path runs from where Langdale Road meets Caton Road). Again, full training will be provided under the direction of David Redmore and Lancaster City Council.