Our main event for March is Walk for the Woods on Saturday March 17th starting any time between 10 am and 2 pm. Because this is St Patrick’s Day we have decided to try and walk to Tipperary. This is also in recognition of locally born Jack Judge, who wrote the song 100 years ago. It’s a long way—260 miles as the crow flies—so we need a lot of people to do a lot of 1 mile laps round the Woods. At the same time the more people that you can get to sponsor you the more money we can raise to help look after the site. Sponsor forms are available from the Pavilion or here on the downloads page.
Lots of new trees have gone in recently. The Sunday volunteers put 2 beeches and an oak in the meadow last week, children from St Gregs and Abbey schools were able to plant a large number of oak and beech whips in the wooded area and round the edge of the meadow. This was thanks to a grant from the Big Tree Plant and to Lisa and Gordon Whittaker whose friends gave money for the big trees instead of wedding presents. Thanks to everyone who took part including Lisa and Gordon and South Staffs plc who dug the big holes for us (there is a DVD of one of the volunteers falling in—or was he pushed?)
There were 15 volunteers at the Oral History Training Day which was led very ably by Julia Letts. Lots of issues were discussed and ideas considered and the volunteers had a little look at the recorders that they will be using. The group will be meeting again and having the opportunity to do practice interviews, before starting to interview the people who have offered to tell their stories. We are happy to hear from others who would like to be interviewed about their memories of the Woods for the project. If you or anyone you know is interested please contact Viv Cole at the office (420 1061). This project is funded by Heritage Lottery Fund.
Despite it being a cloudy night over 40 people turned up for the star gazing evening! Dave Evetts from Birmingham Astronomical Society provided fascinating information about the stars and planets and the group have offered to come back in the autumn and do another session—date to be confirmed. Also they are going to bring a solar telescope to the Picnic (July 15th) so that we can have the opportunity of looking safely at the sun. Thanks to the group for their enthusiasm and willingness to share their knowledge with us.
We already have sponsors for 2 of our events this year. Derek Spires, a local estate agent, is sponsoring Theatre in the Woods which this year is Much Ado About Nothing and will take place on Thursday June 14th. Also Companion Care Vets are sponsoring the Picnic. We are still looking for a sponsor for the All about Dogs event on September 9th, so if you, or any company you know, would like to do this, please get in touch with the office.
The trustees have been giving some thought to ways of minimising future damage to the fountain, and have decided to replace the tiles with cedar shingles. The hope is that they can be fixed on more firmly and will not be a temptation for people to throw stones at and try to smash. Viv is currently looking for funding to meet the cost and we will let you know when the work will be done.
There was a huge response to the Forest Schools activities held at half term. These will be held again during the Easter holidays on the following dates: 4th, 5th and 11th April from 10 am to 3 pm for over 8s and on 12th April from 10 am to 12 noon there will be a Teddy Bears’ Picnic for the under 8s. All sessions must be booked in advance and forms are available at the shop or office.
Finally, don’t forget the Easter Egg Roll and Easter Egg Hunt on Bank Holiday Monday, April 9th, starting at 11 am. This year, due to popular demand, there will all be an Adults Easter Egg Roll following the children’s competition.
Charity number: 1092754