Friends of Cliffe House
Yorkshire Studies Group
Since the last magazine article, volunteering work was cancelled because of lockdown. Work recommenced in July following measures put in place by the centre management team to enable volunteers to work safely and comply with current guidelines.
It was agreed to stagger the start times for two groups of no more than six volunteers, to avoid pinch points when meeting for the day’s tasks. The groups work in different locations of the woodland within the required restrictions.
One group started thinning out the rhododendron ponticum hedge to the rear boundary of the lawn and lifting the crown of the magnificent holly tree.
The other group cut out all the overhanging branches of the mature trees along the path between the allotment gardens and the main woodland. This group also cleared an area of dogwood (Cornus) adjacent to the top woodland, which had self-layered and was out of control. Other invasive species were also cleared.
Work is now ongoing on the three ephemeral ponds in the top ponds area, to clear the overgrown bog plants and overhanging ‘self-set’ trees; the idea being that the volunteers take ownership of this area and make it a development project to bring them back to their former glory.
The volunteers always work within the risk assessment and current government guidelines to ensure that everyone on site stays safe.
We look forward to the continued workload throughout the autumn and winter and the development of this interesting site.
Geoff Ryder – Friends of Cliffe House Woodland Volunteer