Park benefits from name game and more trees
Local people have helped change the identity of the different areas of a popular country park near Clipstone.
The nine compartments, or areas of Vicar Water Country Park were previously known by number only, but have been given names by people living close to the park.
Local people were invited to offer their suggestions so that each had a name associated with the park and to assist them, the Greenwood Community Forest Team provided maps and background information about the park’s history, nature and wildlife at Vicar Water Fun Day. Local groups and schools were also asked to take part too.
Countryside ranger Matt Smith who works for Newark and Sherwood District Council which manages the park, oversaw the competition and picked out the most appropriate suggested names. Those individuals and groups choosing winning names were then invited to plant an oak tree in the appropriate compartment on Saturday, November 26, the beginning of National Tree Week.
Chairman of Newark and Sherwood District Council Councillor Tony Roberts at the newly-named Mallard Spinney, with local park-users who helped plant trees and named the different areas of Vicar Water Country Park.
The chosen names were:
- Skylark Copse
- High Hazel Coppice
- Colliers’ Plantation
- Bower Hill Wood
- Mallard Spinney
- Portland Plantation
- Flixter Breck
- Warmbroke Wood
- And Oak Wood which had previously been chosen
All of these have a local connection with, for example, Colliers’ Plantation was named for the miners from Clipstone Colliery and High Hazel Coppice named after one of the coal seams at the pit.
To mark the new names, nine native oak trees – one for each area – were planted along with approximately 120 other smaller native trees which will gap-up hedges as they grow, thanks to funding from a Greenwood Community Tree planting Grant.
Councillor Tony Roberts, chairman of Newark and Sherwood District Council said: “You could say ‘What’s in a name?’ because Vicar Water is a beautiful park anyway but it is very fitting to have names for the different compartments and lovely to see so many trees being planted.”
Matt Smith said: “When we applied for the woodland improvement grant it dawned on us that it sounded impersonal that all of our woodland plantations were only known by a compartment number. Woodlands are interesting places and historical names are much more intriguing.
“By asking local people for their ideas for woodland names I hope that we have added another element for visitors to the park to enjoy and to gain a greater understanding of the parks long and interesting history.”
Nic Wort, project officer for Greenwood, said: “Planting these trees is a great way to say thank you to people for choosing the names. Tree planting is always a positive way of involving the community in helping to develop the site. And choosing a native tree such as oak will bring many benefits to the park. As well as producing oxygen, they look great and attract wildlife.”
The Greenwood Community Forest Team is a partnership aimed at encouraging people to look after and use their local green spaces and parks. It has been heavily involved in the early development of Vicar Water Country Park and funding for the project came from the former Countryside Agency via the community forest programme.