Trimming the Copse
For three weeks in May, Three Cornered Copse echoed to the sound of chainsaws and wood chippers, as the council's contractors went to work on the larger inhabitants of our woodland.
Their focus was to take away the branches that threatened to fall across the paths and into the areas that people might be. Some of the trees are quite old and had some evidence of rot in the trunk. So they were reduced to a monolith. This provides habitats for insects and small invertebrates over the years to come, and lasts much Longer than a trunk on the forest floor.
There were a few concerns about doing this at the time when birds are nesting, and some of our members spoke to the contractors, who reassured us that they did a survey of the trees they were working on to ensure no nests were threatened. Arboriculturalists tend to be part ecologists and sympathetic to the fauna of a woodland: it was good to hear them recognising our concerns. Much of the work was "taking the weight" off some of the older beech trees, to keep them living but also safe from dropping on to populated areas.
On a recent BBC programme. a tree surgeon stated that beech trees can live for 300 years: "A hundred years to grow, a hundred years to live, and a hundred years to die." Let's hope our beech trees are now fit enough to make it further along this timeline.
Our first work day for Friends of Three Cornered Copse finally took place, accompanied by our Park Ranger. Only six of us were present. in line with the rules, and the focus was on tidying up after a long absence. A large amount of litter had been dropped over the months, and around a dozen bags were filled with the debris of picnics, drinking parties and coffee meetings.
Recently, the bottom lane to Goldstone Crescent has been churned up by contractors accessing building works in the garden of one of the houses. As a bridleway, this is prohibited to motor traffic, but despite this, the damage to the lane proceeded unchallenged. We've requested amore secure gate to prevent this happening in the future.
Despite the comings and goings, the copse Is looking at its best in this Spring and early Summer, it's well worth a stroll to see the vibrant greens and blossoms at this time of year.