Cliffhanger article – July. Getting out and about

16 Jul
Within a few miles of Sherston there are some real wildlife gems which aren’t widely known about or visited, so if the weather’s fine and you fancy a wonderful walk here are three suggestions which you may not have come across – and they are all free!
If you have children and want to get them out and about try Lower Moor Farm near Oaksey. It’s just the other side of Malmesbury (go to Crudwell and turn right towards Oaksey – on the edge of the Cotswold Water Park). It’s at the centre of a number of reserves run by Wiltshire Wildlife Trust and has a visitor centre and an area specifically for children including a copy of a bronze age house and small ponds. Nearby there are water meadows, lots of orchids and lakes. Lots more on the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust web site
Another great site that’s really underused is Lower Woods. Lower Woods is one of the largest ancient woodlands in the south-west of England and covers almost 700 acres and is located near Wickwar and Hawkesbury Upton off Inglestone Common – just the other side of the A46 and it’s only 8 miles away. There are series of footpaths through a large variety of woods with lots to explore and Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust, who run the site, have maps available on site and on their web site.

Finally there is Blakehill Farm is a 600 acre site just the other side of Minety (about 1 mile out towards Cricklade). It’s an old RAF base where Dakota’s took off from for Arnhem on the last war. Wiltshire Wildlife Trust have spent the last 10 years restoring the site to a traditional hay meadow and is one of the largest in the country. The wildflowers are fantastic as are the Hare’s, Kestrel’s and Sky Larks. More details on the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust web site.

If you would like any more information have a look on the various web sites or give me a ring on 01666 840995. If you do visit one of the sites do let me know, and if you know of other good local sites I am very interested to hear.

And finally – I saw my first ever Marsh Tit in Grove Wood – it’s basically a black and gray version of a Blue Tit. At least I was very excited!!

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