News from Leigh Woods
LONG ASHTON/LEIGH WOODS NEWSLETTER - October 2018
LEIGH WOODS SOCIETY
all enjoyed the return of The Tour of Britain, albeit for about 2 minutes, as
it passed through Leigh Woods on its way into the countryside and back again.
Watching them speed-toiling up Rownham Hill and then Burwalls was exhausting!
hot Summer brought the ever present threat of fires closer to us than was
comfortable. With the woods on our doorstep the National Trust put out warnings
and gave us telephone numbers to call should we see anything suspicious or any
sign of a fire. We would have been very
vulnerable had a fire caught hold: luckily it didn’t happen. Carole, the Head Ranger says: “Leigh Woods is a National Nature
Reserve (NNR), Site of Special
Scientific Interest (SSSI) and Special Area of Conservation (SAC) with four
distinct areas: historic wood pasture, ancient woodland, Stokeleigh Camp
(Iron-Age Hill Fort) and Burwalls Wood. Part of what makes this site so special
is the 390 veteran and ancient trees. In simple terms, an ancient tree is
always old. A veteran tree shows features of ancientness at a much younger age.
These features are incredibly important for a range of organisms including
fungi, lichens, bryophytes (mosses and liverworts), invertebrates, bats and
birds. Each tree has its own ecosystem and can be host to thousands of
individuals. Over the summer the rangers had a tough time dealing with many
fires which are not permitted on this highly designated site. One in particular
incident saw a 400+ year old oak burnt to the ground overnight. We are now trying to raise awareness of the
sensitivity of the site so that this can be avoided in the future.”
“HELP US SAVE ASHTON COURT MINIATURE RAILWAY”
were saddened to hear that there is a very real possibility that this railway
will cease to operate following the end of the end of the 2018 season. Bristol
City Council were proposing not to renew the lease on this site as they intend
to use the land for alternative activities.
Following an outcry from the general public, we understand they have
been given a stay of execution for one year only. There is no security beyond the end of 2019. Bristol
Society of Model Engineers is a volunteer run, charity based, organisation that
has built and operated this railway over the last 45 years. Over this time, it
has given countless hours of enjoyment to the wider community in and around the
city of Bristol. The railway needs our support. Please help by signing the
petition and encourage everyone you know who care about community organisations
such as this one. www.bristolmodelengineers.co.uk
Suspension Bridge toll booth: planning
permission has now been granted but the final designs are still awaiting
approval. The appointed contractors are Beard Construction, a local company,
who were involved in the SS Great Britain project amongst other heritage
projects. During Open Doors weekend long
queues built up waiting to explore under the Bridge. Rediscovered in 2002, the
vaulted chambers in the Leigh Woods Abutment are an atmospheric piece of
Brunelian engineering. Intrepid adventurers (over 7 years old) could don a hard
hat, descend a ladder and peek through the door into Vault 4.
are still awaiting the Police Survey to see whether we qualify as a Speed Watch
area. We hope to hear soon. We are looking forward to meeting our new
Beat Officer, Phil Rudden.
Commemoration: we, in Leigh Woods, are
looking forward to joining with our neighbours in Long Ashton to remember the
fallen from the Parish on this special Armistice Day.
this Autumn we are celebrating the 125th Anniversary of the Consecration of St
Mary’s Leigh Woods. A service, by
invitation, be will be held on the 18th October. Events
to end 2018: a Quiz Night will be held on the 15th November and our annual
Christmas Party on 4th December. Please
refer to The Link for more details.
Leigh Woods is close to the village of Abbots Leigh whose website is http://www.abbotsleigh.org.uk/