The Grapevine Parish Magazine entry for May 2020

What strange times we are living in, very sad for so many but let’s hope that those remaining will be wiser and stronger at the end of this trial.

The wood is now looking beautiful at the moment. Our expert ecologist, Martin Hammond, author of the York Biodiversity Audit, said at the outset of our project that we should concentrate our efforts in the southern area near the abundant indicator species of ancient woodland. This we have done and it has paid great dividends – in recent years the carpet of bluebells has expanded magnificently, interspersed with hundreds of white stitchwort and yellow celandines. The ditches have been full of primroses and we expect now that the buds on the trees are just about to burst into life. It will be so wonderful to be able to walk freely again in our wonderful English countryside once the current restrictions are over.

Bluebells in Hagg Wood


What a shame that the old and the young have since last October been so inconvenienced from taking pleasure in these simple joys by the blockage of the path into the wood from Intake Lane. One of our friends, an internationally renowned fly expert, loves to explore the wood but at the age of 87 he cannot walk the long distance that the blocked gates entail.

The Friends of Hagg Wood submitted two claims to the City of York Council in 1997, to get the footpaths recognised and put on the Definitive Right of Way Map. After the Ombudsman was called in to look at a claim in Fulford, the Council was ordered to make progress and our claim is currently being processed. We’ve been gathering information to add to our claims and would like to thank everyone who has come forward to help us. The consultation period ends 17th April and the outcome depends on the strength of the objections. We will keep you informed.

Have you thought about joining the Friends of Hagg Wood? It’s £4 individuals, £6 for a family for usually 3 lectures, 2 cycle rides, several social occasions and monthly working parties each year once we return to normal. Your support at this difficult time would be immensely encouraging as we work tirelessly to get our paths open again. We have no doubt that we will win.

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