A small group of us spent the morning at Coppetts Wood on Sunday helping Ollie and his team to clear the Hatters Meadow. Coppetts Wood and Glebelands local Nature Reserve was once part of Finchley Wood and famous for its use by Highwaymen but is now a Site of Borough Importance for Conservation and the conservation is managed by our friend, Ollie Natelson, and The Coppetts Wood Conservationists who volunteer there on Sunday mornings.
Fortunately, the highwaymen are long gone and we weren’t reliant on a shear wielding Giselle to protect us (I should point out that Giselle was wielding her shear in a perfectly safe manor with all of the correct clothing and not running) and it was just a 3 hour shift in glorious sunshine with a couple of snack breaks thrown in.
The Hatters Meadow goes back to the first visit from the Hatters to help Ollie in 2008 and due to the early efforts to clear the area and cut down the trees that were starving the area of light, every spring the meadow flourishes with wild flowers. This however, relies on some more work on the site every autumn.
On Sunday, the work consisted of clearing the bramble and nettles – expertly performed by Gideon, Adam, Sarah and Giselle throughout the morning while Rory walked backwards and forwards to Tesco (an equally important job). Dave performed wonderfully in his role as chief photographer and ‘faffer’ while Steve and Drea got stuck in and covered in seeds.
Overall, the morning was a success, right until somebody dropped my sandwich in the mud. We’ll be back again to see the fruits of our labour in spring.