Smithills Estate is starting a new venture in 2020. At 1700 acres, Smithills Estate is the Woodland Trust’s largest site in England. Part of the challenge of running the estate is the management of the land and maintaining the estate for all to enjoy.
Starting on 12th March and on the second Thursday of every month, we will be running Volunteer Task Days where we are asking local community groups to join us in completing a range of practical tasks on the estate which will be so valuable in the conservation of the landscape. These Volunteer Task Days will encompass a range of tasks in a variety of locations across the estate, such as;
Beating Up – Smithills is in the process of planting 1000s of trees! Smithills Estate is hoping to increase its tree coverage from 10 percent to 20 percent over the next 3 years and has so far planted 50,000 trees. So now we need to make sure they are all happy and healthy and able to survive! So beating up involves checking on all our young trees, removing any grass or weeds that may be preventing them from growing, removing tubes from any trees and planting new ones!
Rhoddie Bashing– Rhododendron may seem beautiful when their flowers bloom in spring but they are an evasive species that, if not carefully managed, can run riot and have started to do so on the estate! They take over the land, shading the ground and becoming so dominant that none of the native flowers, or the animals that depend on them, can survive. So bashing back this invasive species is so important in giving our native trees, shrubs and plants space to grow.
Litter Picking – No explanation needed! But such an important task as litter on the Smithills estate has such a hazardous effect on wildlife.
This is a feel and a flavour of the sort of tasks we will be completing on our Volunteer Task Days. There will be no commitment to turn up each month; if a group is interested in being involved then we will email out the details of the upcoming task and where to meet a couple of weeks prior and if they can come along then they will just need to let us know and how many people you are likely to be bringing along. We will provide all tools and equipment and a brew – we just ask that people wear sensible clothes and footwear.
Contact Charlotte Atty, Events & Community Coordinator - Smithills Estate