Hazlegrove pupils, parents and staff plant a five-acre Jubilee Wood

16 Jan 2013

Saturday morning dawned bright and sunny with no frost in the ground – a perfect day for the Hazlegrove Prep school to be planting the trees for the Jubilee Wood. The wood, which is being created to commemorate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, is located on the five acres of land that lie between the playing fields and the A303 and will provide a space for theatre events, summer sports and camping for the children, as well as for outdoor learning.

Armed with spades, and dressed in old clothes, parents, pupils and staff walked across to the Jubilee Wood field ready to set to work. Each tutor group was given an assortment of young trees to plant in their “section” of the wood, including working coppice, edibles, bush craft, birches and maples, and not forgetting the wetland area!

It was amazing how quickly the field started looking like a fledgling wood and those who finished their areas moved on to see where they could help other groups. In just over an hour the job was all but done. Two thousand trees had been planted! A well-earned hot chocolate was enjoyed by all, before pupils scraped off as much mud as they could and returned to their morning lessons.

We now look forward to the spring and to seeing the wood starting to grow…

Central to the design of the Jubilee Wood are 60 flowering crab apple trees, each one representing a year in the Queen’s reign. These trees have been arranged in a circle standing like handmaidens in a Royal Court and are approached via an avenue of trees. Standing on its own on the far side of the circle will be a single oak, grown from Hazlegrove’s much-celebrated King John oak. Around the crab apple circle, 2,500 young indigenous trees have been planted to represent the diversity of species found within Britain’s native woodlands.

Headmaster Richard Fenwick comments: “The Jubilee Wood will be instrumental in raising awareness among our children about the rich diversity of plants and animals to be found within the local countryside. We are all future custodians of our natural heritage and Hazlegrove pupils will be able to draw on this significant educational resource now and for decades to come.”

To follow the story of the Hazlegrove Jubilee Wood please visit the blog via a link on the home page of our website www.hazlegrove.co.uk or directly at www.Hazlegrove.wordpress.com