D and I went along to an "Oak and Shires" event at Yorks Wood last Saturday afternoon.
Yorks Wood covers around 11 hectares and is ancient semi-natural woodland comprising mainly Oak and Birch plus some Ash and Willow. Invasive species are controlled within the woodland. It was designated as a Local Nature Reserve in 1991. The wood, originally known as Kingshurst Wood, was first mentioned in 1456 when it was owned by the Mountford family. The wood became known as Yorks Wood from the 19th century named after the family who then owned Kingshurst Hall. Birmingham Scout movement bought the wood and surrounding fields in the 1920's and set up a permanent County campsite. But during the 1970's the site was sold for housing development although thankfully most of the wood was left untouched to act as a buffer between housing estates.
There were several displays of traditional woodland craft including pole lathes turning wood and hurdle makers and this display by a company from Malvern who make products from locally coppiced wood.
These beautiful gypsy flowers were made in a couple of minutes.
Good to see the Green Man there providing music and storytelling.
There were various activities for children including face painting and the RSPB had a stall.
Tan Tan, a working heavy horse, was demonstrating how horses can be used to help manage woodland.
Babbs Mill LNR is adjacent to the woodland. Sadly, currently part of this area is under threat from possible housing development.
I've put my gypsy flower in among the dried flowers I bought from Tewkesbury Abbey.
I've just finished reading the Green Road Into the Trees where the author Hugh Thomson walks ancient ways from Dorset to Norfolk (highly recommended) and was about to start reading Claxton by Mark Cocker and Inglorious by Mark Avery until I got sidetracked. Recent visits to Herefordshire together with reading the Merrily Watkins books reminded me about these two books. I bought and read "The Old Straight Track" by Alfred Watkins back in 1979 but "Timpson's Ley Lines" is a more recent purchase albeit 15 years ago. Its been lurking on my pile of books to read since then! Apparently Timpson also wrote a book on Country Churches unfortunately now out of print but I'll be keeping an eye out for it in second hand bookshops.
I finally started my Christmas Baking yesterday - Christmas Puddings first of all. I use a recipe by James Martin - note the pen scribbles concerning cooking time experiments!
Ready to be steamed.
Those of you who've been reading my blog for a few years might recognise the mould on the right - it makes a canon-ball shaped Christmas Pudding!
Rook balancing Act
2 hours ago