In July, the Trust ran another successful course with Flora Locale on woodland management to improve biodiversity. The photos show the group looking at the newly created coppice coupe in Elliker Wood and discussing the fluctuating water temperatures in the River Wharfe

Flora Locale, July 2017

Flora Locale on the River Wharfe, July 2017

New Hedgeline in Ox Close

During the winter months, the eastern boundary of Ox Close wood has been cut back. Trees that were overhanging the field have been removed or trimmed back to allow more light to the field edge thereby benefitting any growing crops. To maintain a boundary a new hedge has been planted along this side of the wood. Thanks go to The Woodland Trust for supplying the plants, guards and supports.

Planting the new hedge

Planting the new hedge


The Trust starts its 25th Anniversary

At our AGM in May, the Trust commenced its 25 Years Anniversary. Professor Ian Rotherham gave a talk on Ancient Woodlands to which the village History Group were invited… our first combined event.

The AGM in May, 2017 started our 25 Year’s Anniversary.

During the afternoon before the AGM, members of the Trust and the History Group accompanied Ian through Ox Close wood where given an enlightening aspect of the history of the wood. The rainy conditions did not dampen anyone’s enthusiasm!

Looking at Ox Close Wood with a different perspective

Bridleway chaos

During March, the bridleway down to the river was re-surfaced. The spoil that this work generated has been tipped to the sides of the bridleway and as a consequence has covered locally uncommon species of wild flowers. The Trust met up with the Footpath Officer (Groundwork) and the Parish Council to discuss this and other damage that was caused.

Spoil covering where Black Horehound grows which, locally, is very uncommon

Spoil at the side of the re-surfaced bridleway

An Event with Flora Locale

Flora Locale leaflet  minimizedOn Wednesday 13th July, the Trust is hosting a workshop for Flora Locale with the purpose of “Managing woodlands to improve biodiversity and sustainability”.

If you wish to attend, it is essential to book. For further information go to the Training section of alternatively email at

Meet initially at Greenfields.

Christmas Floods!

The rain over Christmas Day and Boxing Day caused unprecedented flooding. Locally, the river rose to its highest level in living memory. Last year’s repairs to the bridge appear to have survived although the toilet near the kiln area got flushed away!

The river over the bridge! Shouldn't that be the bridge over the river?

The river over the bridge! Shouldn’t that be the bridge over the river?

View looking through Ox Close Wood looking down from the kiln area towards the river.

View looking through Ox Close Wood looking down from the kiln area towards the river.

Bat Evening in Ox Close Wood

On Monday 18th May we surveyed the bats in Ox Close Wood. Our bat expert, who is a consultant ecologist, brought a number of bat detectors so that we could all have a go at listening to and deciphering the calls that we heard. Four bat species were identified during the evening; Daubenton’s, Noctule and Common and Soprano Pipistrelle. The river was a particularly rewarding area where nearly all the bats were seen and heard. A couple of the bat detectors could record calls and further species may be identified when these recordings are analysed over the next few days.

A few of the Trust members who attended the bat evening.... surrounded by Daubenton's bats!

A few of the Trust members who attended the bat evening…. surrounded by Daubenton’s bats!

Two more bat evenings are planned for the 17th and 24th June when different areas of the parish will be surveyed. If you would like to come; meet at the church on Moor Lane at 9.30pm. or contact 01937 574140.

More plug planting in Ox Close

To further increase the biodiversity of uncommon wP1130378sharpild flowers in Ox Close wood, we have again been plug planting in the grazing pasture. The plants were grown in the Trusts own wild flower nursery from seed that was collected locally.

About half of the wood was clear felled in 1992 by its previous owners. Until then, this area of the wood consisted of non-native conifers that shaded the ground so much that very little was left of whatever seed bank might have been present. Consequently the area that is now kept open by conservation grazing has a poor range of wild flowers which we are hoping to rectify.

This time, to deter the deer from jumping over wire fences, the posts have been angled inwards and the tops of the mesh netting has been laced with string.

Species that have been planted include Betony, Rock Rose, Aquilegia, and Ladies Bedstraw.

Plug planting in Ox Close

Fenced off area with plug plants of wild flowers