Plas Withy - regrowth
Plas Withy - freshly coppiced
Cristin Withy - regrowth
Cristin Withy - freshly coppiced
Cristin centre ride - before
Cristin centre ride - during boardwalk building
Cristin centre ride - boardwalk completed (view from opposite direction)
I mentioned down the blog, that there were still the lowland withies (Plas, Cristin & Ty Pellaf) to coppice and boardwalks to fix up there. When I first offered to do this, I was probably naive about what I was taking on. Since February, I have spent more than a hundred hours coppicing, removing a lot of the resultant brash and derelict boardwalks. Then there was repairing and replacing the boardwalks in the mist net rides, this included reusing 150 posts from earlier defencing work, laying about 60 metres of boardwalk, scouring the island for bits of wood to use, adding chicken wire to potential slippy areas, and hammering in 12 kg of nails & staples – I think I may have RSI from this☺. Next was the shredding of about half the willow prunings which produced 35 sacks of chippings, which are now being used as mulch on the soft fruit in the island’s gardens.
This would have been much harder, but for all the fetching & carrying by Steve & Ben Porter with the quad & trailer. Also, things speeded up towards the end with great help from Dai & Gwyn Stacey, and Richard Else on the chipping.
Along the way I ripped my wellies and waders (puncture outfits are not just for push bikes), got more cuts and bruises than I care to remember and soggy socks most days. However, I’ll also remember coppicing in the sun & snow, watching warblers flitting about within feet of me and hearing their bills click as they took insects on the wing, and being able to put up mist nets safely and in places where they’d not been for several years.