Great Wood School - Bare

We have worked on this site since 1985 and it has been amazing to see the changes over that time. The school are very fortunate to be the custodians of one of the few small woods in Morecambe and although it has the name ‘Great’, it has never been very much larger than now.  Old alder trees made up the woodland site when we first took it on but any understorey was grazed by the donkeys, who over wintered in the fields surrounding the wood and school.  Since 1985, housing was built in the fields threatening encroachment into the wood, so we stepped in to fence the site, plant hedges and start work on regenerating the whole woodland.  Many of the trees were coming to the end of their lives and we have planted oak and alder as the upper canopy.  These tolerate the very wet conditions and will live for a long time after we have all gone!  In addition willows, hazel and in particular, holly now form significant understorey which is fantastic for nesting birds and small mammals.

In addition to the wood there is an adjacent pond with dipping platform and we have also planted many trees around the school grounds.  These are now creating quite an impact.

New wildflower area
Adding a gate

We fenced off this part of the field which will become a wildflower area.

Adding netting
Fixing to fence
Gate making
Pete's handiwork

Here we are gate-making on the corner site.

There is too much weed on the pond so Liz decides to remove an overhanging branch to enable more light to reach the water, especially in spring and summer.  This should improve the pond life.

Wildflower bed
Close up

The Wildflower Bed before bursting into bloom last spring

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Showing curve

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How to start!
How to start!

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The platform
The platform

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Showing curve

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After many years of use the old dipping platform came to the end of its life so we constructed a new larger one.  More children will have safe, supervised access to the pond.  After so many weeks of rain, this job became a very muddy one but we enjoyed using our carpentry skills!

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The PTA would like to give us a 'tool gift' of up to £100, in return for our efforts on the dipping platform!  What good news!

For National Tree Week 2019, 60 Year 3 children planted trees with Liz.  They had a great afternoon planting hazel, oak, alder, willow and bird cherry.   

 

Wet ditch
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Planks needed
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How to start?
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A slight diversion!
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Bridge submerged!
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Lets walk on pond!
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Which spot_
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A muddy job!
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Taking shape
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Chainsaw needed
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Nearly done
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Need strong knees
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Takes Liz's weight!
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Outcome success
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Ready for children
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All Great Wood did a sponsored walk to obtain funds for the wood, so we were able to construct a bridge over a wet ditch to redirect a path

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Planting our anniversary tree at Great Wood School

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Our anniversary tree is 3 years old in this photo!

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And here it's 10 years old!

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Great Wood Infants took their plants, started off in the classroom, to Bare Lane Station and put them in a large planter on a platform to produce peas and beans for passengers to help themselves.  They also made colourful artwork.

Clematis
stakes to mark new plants
Native bluebells
Great Wood children planting trees
Great Wood Pond
Great Wood Pond
Dipping platform
Strong stake to support new tree
Weeding round tree
A vixen spotted at Great Wood
Clearing some detritus from pond

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