Read about the life and work of the Attingham Wardens

Attingham Park is a National Trust property comprising of an 18th Century mansion set in a Repton landscape; the Park and wider Estate includes a deer park, walled garden, several miles of the rivers Severn and Tern, extensive farmland and woodlands.

Friday, 18 January 2013

January snow

A belated happy new year to my lovely blog readers! I apologise if there are lots of typing errors in this post - my fingers are still numb from feeding the deer in the snow. It's beautiful out there on the park but driving around on our Kawasaki mule is not such a fun experience when the wind is biting your skin and you are half-blinded by the snowfall. No matter what the weather throws at us
, the wardens are out and about getting the jobs done; just this morning we have reopened a path, emptied the dog bins, fed the deer, salted the car park and drives, delivered a vehicle and rescued a member of staff and their car from a snow drift!
Deer manager Colin and a snowy herd of fallow eating their lunch

This week we have started a new project - the erection of a newt fence around a site that will be developed later this year. Attingham has Great Crested Newts in several places on the estate - in fact, the UK in general has a steady and widespread population in comparison to the rest of Europe. They are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act and accordingly, we are working under direction from Natural England to prepare the site for building while causing as little disturbance as possible to the area. The newt fence will prevent newts from entering the site - the fence is made of a UV reinforced polythene and is dug into the ground (a bit like rabbit fencing) so that the newts cannot climb up and over it. Some of the trench has been dug out using a small plough and a JCB but in places that just isn't suitable so many of our volunteers have been wielding spades and digging out the trench by hand - hard work, but it keeps you warm!

Now that the flooding had receded, the damage to the park can
 start to be repaired. The potholes on the causeway between the
bridges near the mansion/deer park entrance have been filled in
and we can now see the multiple trees and branches that have
got stuck beneath the bridges - the Environment Agency will be
 dealing with them when they can. This picture shows the wood
 piling up against the bridge nearest the mansion.
The ground is still very wet and muddy so be careful walking in
 the snow - you might find yourself in a puddle under the

While strimming and clearing a hedge last week I came across this lovely example of the strength and determination of trees - they will conquer anything in their path! At some point in the history of Duncote Farm a post and rail fence was erected near an oak... years later I come along and remove the rotting and collapsing remains of the fence and find this:

Proof of tree cannibalism!
Finally a little treat for all of you readers - a special event just for you! Follow this link to find out more about taking part in a murder mystery at Attingham Park exclusively for followers of the various Attingham social media. Enjoy! Click me!