See the bluebells at Abbott Street Copse from a new perspective this spring
PUBLISHED: 11:48 11 April 2019
©National Trust Images/James Dobson
Kingston Lacy is famous for its carpets of bluebells which appear across the estate and are at their best from mid to late April
One of the most popular locations to see bluebells is at Abbott Street Copse where, over the winter, the National Trust’s outdoor team at Kingston Lacy have been working to conserve the woodland. The team have been planting 2,500 trees and 1,500 hedgerow trees in a new plantation next to the existing copse. Part of this work has involved the creation of a new woodland route which will help to protect the bluebells and ancient oak trees whilst still giving visitors the chance to enjoy the spectacular carpets of blue.
Nigel Chalk, Outdoors Manager at Kingston Lacy said ‘In creating this plantation and allowing the woodland to naturalise we will increase, conserve and improve the biodiversity of this environment benefiting wildlife like bats, woodpeckers, dormice, shrews, voles, tree creepers and many invertebrates. It will also help floral diversity, giving the native species of bluebell the chance to spread alongside other species such as wood anemone, primrose and ferns.’
Jake Simpkins, Countryside Ranger at Kingston Lacy commented “Ancient semi-natural woodland in the UK such as Abbott Street Copse has halved since the 1930s. Only 2% of British woodlands fall into this category which often consists of the most diverse woodland habitats. Extending and preserving this habitat is therefore extremely important and the work we have completed will improve and protect this area of woodland for years to come.”
The new woodland visitor route at Abbott Street Copse will wind through the new plantation and parts of the ancient woodland. The plantation consists primarily of oak, with sweet chestnut, hazel, wild cherry and scattered scots pine. Networks of gravel and grass rides will add a mixture of habitats with areas for people and families to walk through and explore. This area will include natural seats, wild flower habitats and new adjoining hedgerow corridors.
Designated bluebell parking will be available nearby from Saturday 13 April to Monday 6 May from 9am - 5pm.
Another great spot to see the bluebells is along the Woodland Trail at Kingston Lacy. This area is ideal for the whole family, with the woodland path suitable for walking and cycling and buggies.
The garden, parkland and Woodland Trail at Kingston Lacy are open daily from 10am – 6pm. For full details head to www.nationaltrust.org.uk/kingston-lacy.