The history of Sadlers Wells Wood
The wood predates the Domesday Book which refers to “a wood one league (three miles) long and one acre (220 yards) broad”. This description fits well with a long thin wood on the banks of a watercourse of which a few sections are still visible in parts of the village. The present Sadlers Wells Wood is the westerly end of this, and the watercourse which runs through the wood is one of the two streams that make up the infant River Gowy.
The present Sadlers Wells Wood
SWCW acquired 3.25 acres of ancient semi-natural woodland which includes a good variety of native broadleaved trees and is bounded on the southerly side by the stream. This is the area shown marked SWCW and is part of the area coloured green on the plan on the next page. It lies to the west of Bunbury Village and to the east of the main A49 Tarporley – Whitchurch main road. An additional area of 2.12 acres was also purchased at the same time which is on the other side of the stream and in the adjoining Parish of Spurstow. This area was planted up in March 2006 with approximately 800 young trees of locally sourced pedunculate oak, ash, small leaved lime, wild cherry, field maple and crab apple. A local volunteer built the bridge across the stream to provide access from one side to the other, and also a bridge across an old ditch. The old part of the wood is now registered as a Local Wildlife Site; the new plantation can only be considered for inclusion in the register when it is at least thirty years old.
Our objectives for Sadlers Wells Wood
- To preserve the heritage of this ancient semi-natural woodland, and to manage and maintain it in accordance with the Local Biodiversity Action Plan for the Cheshire region.
- To provide a valuable amenity for the locality.
- We have completed our objective to extend the boundary of the present wood by the new planting, to bring the boundaries of the wood here to nearer their original position as shown by Burdett’s Map of 1777, and the new planting is now well established.
- To carry out surveys of, and record, the flora and fauna of the wood.
- To use the wood as an educational resource for the local community, both young and old, and to hold a series of informative meetings with friends and users. Bunbury Aldersey CE Primary School and the Bunbury Scouts, Cubs and Brownies regularly use the wood for educational purposes.
- To improve the value of the wood as a wildlife habitat.
- To recruit an army of users, helpers and friends to help in these tasks.
- To improve old pathways and establish new ones.
- Generally to maintain and improve the wood to achieve these objectives.The Friends of Sadlers Wells Wood are members of the public who kindly support the work and objectives of SWCW. The wood itself produces no income and SWCW therefore has to raise all the funds needed to pay for expenditure such as insurance, maintenance, etc., and we hope that people who enjoy the amenity which the wood provides will join to help finance the maintenance and improvement of the wood. The annual subscription is at present £5-00 per person and new members should contact either Michael Bourne or Bob Harris whose details are on the Contact Us page which follows. Members receive a newsletter which is sent out twice a year in Spring and Autumn. Information about current matters can also be found on our notice boards on the Village Hall and at the easterly entrance to the wood.
- Click here for our Newsletters (as available) which contain further information about the history of the wood, the work which we have carried out, the natural history of the wood and other items of interest.