Maintenance team back to work


Bearsted Woodland Trust volunteers returned to work this week after ten weeks of Covid-19 restrictions.

Parts of the 26 acre site look very different, as meadows and plants had to be left to grow unchecked, but hundreds of local people turned to the BWT land as a place to escape to during lockdown.

Chairman John Wale said:-

"Overall the daily footfall has increased substantially. It could be several hundred visits a day, and maybe over a thousand people at weekends.  We have been inundated with messages of thanks from people who have found the peace and tranquillity of the surroundings a great solace and comfort. 

People haven't just been able to exercise, but they tell us their time spent here helped them redress their mental balance and perspective at a time of great worry and uncertainty. What has been particularly pleasing is that the people who've been in touch with Bearsted Woodland Trust over the past weeks cover all age ranges and the fact that their letters, emails and donations were unsolicited makes what we do here even more worthwhile.

The maintenance team have been keen to get back to work at what is traditionally a busy time of the year, but we needed (and still need) to follow Government guidelines and ensure the safety of the team, who are volunteers.  

However, there has been an upside as areas of the BWT land have been growing wild and few will have seen the site as it has been over the past weeks.  Other positives from longer grass are the benefits for wildlife, especially insects and small mammals, and also the lush grass and vegetation, which, until May, had benefitted from the very wet winter months.  Perhaps the most stunning change was to Church Meadow, which was transformed into a vast sea of yellow buttercups. Something I certainly had never seen before."

We hope to resume our newsletters soon