So I only had one personal New Year’s Resolution this year, and that was to keep Sundays free from work and social media so that we could enjoy time outdoors as a family. We had big plans for today but icy roads made us stick closer to home and we ended up at Chopwell Woods. It’s such a short drive from our home but we’ve only been there a couple of times – and each time we go, we always say we should go more often! It has so much to offer – picnic tables dotted all over, hand-sawn benches and sculptures, big wide paths and narrow little trails, marked walking routes and off-road tracks for bikes, lovely lanes for horse-riders – something for everyone!
It’s a massive woodland, 360 hectares all in, lots of conifers but also pockets of ancient woodlands. And the woods are being managed to help the woodlands return to its original growth of native trees. Last time we were there, they were selling Christmas trees gown on site, and Christmas tree decorations made with wood from trees that had been felled to allow more light in to reach the smaller plants and younger native trees to encourage more growth.
With a three year old in tow, we didn’t walk for miles and miles – but you easily could as there are so many diverse paths and tails to explore. We saw lots of dog walkers, all of them friendly, and lots of families enjoying bike rides together. Edith enjoyed running ahead to decide on our route, stopping at one of the hand-made benches for a mid-morning snack! It’s a great spot for a family day out and I’m looking forward to longer walks and picnics there in the spring.
I’m planning to join the Friends of Chopwell Woods as they are doing great work in running events, educating children and working on conversation. You can read all about them here: