Aug 12 2019

Smithills Volunteer Update 12th August 2019

Hello all


 To our newest volunteer… Russ Hedley!!!! (No escape for Russ).

 Task day

The next task day is on Sunday (18th), 9.30am to 12.30pm, and it will be plug planting of wildflowers near to Sugar Loaf. This is in partnership with Lancashire Wildlife Trust, who have supplied the plants, and Ben from LWT will be there to lead the morning, with support from one of our practical group leaders.


Wildlife Group – heathland assessment training

The next training session for the Wildlife Group is heathland assessment this Saturday (17th), 10am to 3pm, led by John Lamb of Lancashire Wildlife Trust.


 Ancient trees training day

Despite the variable weather there has still been a lot of activity here at Smithills… not least of which was the much anticipated ancient tree training day, which 20 volunteers came along to on Saturday. Richard, Mike, Bev, Sheila, Rob and Liz have already been out and about measuring trees on the Estate, and our first trees have appeared on the ancient tree inventory (!


Fantastic Fridays

Clive and Anne helped Charlotte with a session creating wooden wind chimes as part of the Museum’s Fantastic Fridays programme – much busier than anticipated (twice as many people!) but a good time had by everyone. This week… we are making bird feeders!


Smithills Supporters Group meeting

 22 people came along on Tuesday to the meeting, to which Rob B brought along the fantastic display boards created by the Wildlife group for the Horwich Heritage Centre exhibition – really informative and with some excellent photos. Barbara also brought along some great charcoal sketches of the Estate, which were created by her husband – thank you Rob and Barbara for bringing these!


Guided walks

 Mark led an Introduction to Woodlands walk last week, which several volunteers attended, and a few days before that, John Lamb led a grasslands walk which was well attended. Tony led a group on the first History Walk of the Estate, on the same day as the grassland walk. I had good feedback from all three walks – if you attended any of them, I hope you enjoyed it!

The next volunteer-led guided walk is Clive, Rob A and Doug’s Short Introduction to Smithills Estate, which is on Thursday 22nd August at 6pm. Book here –


Social enterprise

Karen has welcomed several local businesses to the Estate, all of whom are contributing either a percentage of their takings, or time in kind, to help us manage the Estate. Last week we had a tai chi qigong session led by Paul Blundell, and have already had requests for more sessions. The Cakery coffee stall has been at Walker Fold car park each weekend, with many positive comments about the coffee and cake! Time2Run Events held the first of a series of 5k races from Walker Fold, which from their photos looked to be really well attended.

Time2Run events staff and volunteers at the first Ice Lolly 5k; Paul Blundell (left) and Will Chambers of the Cakery (right) at Walker Fold


Here are a few photos of some of the very new and very old trees around Walker Fold, from Bev and Bernie.

Two images to the left: Bernie McGrath. Two images to the right: Bev Tabor.

Vicky Entwistle- Smithills Engaging Communities Officer



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