Volunteers celebrated the opening of a new boardwalk in East Harptree Woods on Wednesday 22nd June with a boardwalk shaped cake! The volunteers with the Mendip Hills AONB Unit built the new boardwalk on a footpath in East Harptree Woods that lets walkers cross a very muddy area. The volunteers help the AONB Unit to enhance and conserve the Mendip Hills and raise awareness of its special qualities.
The boardwalk is 15 metres long and took 150 hours of volunteer time to build. The area collects water at this natural low-point making it water logged and very muddy for most of the year. Walkers can now pass along the public right of way through the woods and out on to the Mendip plateau.
Nic Penn, Volunteer Coordinator for the AONB Unit said; ‘The volunteers had to work in very muddy conditions, often digging drainage channels first before working on the boardwalk. This has been an amazing achievement for them and we’re really grateful for all their hardwork and good humour!’
East Harptree Woods is a Forestry Commission site, they worked in partnership by providing the materials for the boardwalk. Near the new boardwalk is the famous Smithams Chimney, a remnant of the mining industry that shaped the landscape.
The volunteers do a variety of practical tasks across the area every other Wednesday. Find out more on our Volunteering page.