The start of the February half term was incredibly busy at Attingham - a bit of sunshine saw over 4,000 people coming here on Sunday! Saturday was also a good day and the Valentines Tree Planting event saw 87 trees being planted in the grounds for (and in memory of) loved ones. The wardens have just about managed to cope with the influx of cars but with the ground still wet from months of rain it has been something of a struggle to find enough dry ground to park on. Thankfully the rain has stayed off and despite the cold end to the holiday the ground is finally starting to dry off (touch wood!).
As well as managing the car parking our teams have been hedgelaying, cutting out old and un-rescuable hedges and replanting them, burning brash, trimming up the side shoots on our young cricket-bat willows, mending the cleft oak fence along the park perimeter and helping to prepare for the evening snowdrop walks. The final snowdrop evening is tonight, and I will be here until 8pm feeding the bonfire so that visitors wishing to enjoy their mulled wine outside can stay warm. Like last year, the path from the Stables to the Walled Garden will be candle lit and the snowdrops are at their peak, softly lit with fairy lights.
Today is also the last day of deer feeding in front of the public. With the trees starting to bud and the grass growing, they no longer need the supplementary feed. The cull will also be finishing in the next week or so now that herd numbers are nearly perfect, so if you want some venison make sure you get it soon!
To finish, here are a couple of pictures taken by volunteer Phil - these beautiful specimens were found on some rotting willow on one of our farms. Gorgeous colours!