February 2012: Planting trees in the Forest
We have received permission from Environment to plant some native species of trees in the triangular shaped parcel of land situated at Le Bordage, Forest, which is owned by the States of Guernsey. This is where there is purported to be a wishing well. Nigel Clarke has kindly agreed to donate the trees as part of Queux Patio Plants Centre's Green Legacy. In the future we hope to get sponsorship and help tidying up this area.
On 19 March , a group of Forest parishioners gathered in a corner of the Forest Church graveyard in the morning sunshine. They had come to witness the planting of a yew tree to commemorate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. With a spade of earth the Reverend Linda La Vasseur dedicated the tree to prosperity.
A yew tree is slow growing and this one should still be standing in a 100 years' time. A journalist and photographer from the local newspaper were present to record the moment. Other photographs were taken to place in the Church magazine, so that everyone could read about it and come and see the magnificent specimen in the graveyard, this being the first tree placed there and perhaps the first of many.
A female yew tree was chosen because the male variety produces allergenic pollen, whereas the female will produce berries which are good for the birds. The event was instigated by the Forest Floral Group, part of Floral Guernsey and Britain in Bloom who thought that the Forest Parish should take part in "Planting a tree for the Jubilee".
On 11 May, twelve 4th Air Scouts lead by Bailiwick Scout Commissioner, Julie Bulpit, met at the 'plantation' just below the Manor Hotel, Forest.
This area of land was given to the States by Rev. Coleman, former rector of Forest Church, but the parish has been given permission to plant there and has responsibility for its upkeep.
The 30 trees and shrubs were kindly donated by Nigel Clarke of Queux Patio Plants as part of his Green Legacy Project to promote wildlife.
The boys had great fun planting the trees into the prepared holes and filling them in with compost.
Picture reproduced courtesy of The Guernsey Press.
On 30 May, eleven 4th Scout Beavers lead by Leader, Sue Le Billon, met at Petit Bot. They had come to plant up two half-barrels with compost and flowers ready for the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations taking place on Sunday 3rd June.
Nigel Clarke of Queux Patio Plants showed the boys how to place polystyrene at the bottom for drainage, add compost and how to place the flowers in the tubs. He told them how to handle the plants carefully and that the flowers were beneficial to insect life.
Les Houards Well
The Forest Floral Group came up with the idea of renovating the well at Les Houards last year and thanks to the Heaume family and Granite Le Pelley this has been achieved.
The well has not been used since the 1920s and it is believed that during the war a tree which was being felled in an adjoining field crashed into the well causing the stone to fall into the 30 foot well. Since then it has been allowed to fall into disrepair and become an eyesore.
In November the Dean of the Parish Richard Heaume asked parishioners if they would be happy to buy the well for £1, because that is the minimum amount he could sell it legally. This was agreed and that the Constables would maintain it in the future.
Director Richard Breban of Granite Le Pelley put it to his Board that they should renovate the well free as a token of support for the parish and this was approved. Work began in April 2012.
The well before renovation
Apprentices Richard Moore and Dale Simon worked on restoring the well once the tree had been removed, and cleaned the walls and rebuilt it using hydraulic lime instead of sand and stone. Some of the granite was reused, including the blue granite around the door and the lintel.
At the end of May the work was nearly complete, the door needed another coat of paint and a sign was being designed to be placed on the door. A padlock was secured to the door and will remain locked for safety reasons. In June begonia plants were placed around the well.
On 4th July parishioners and those involved in the project gathered at Les Houards well for a Service of Dedication. The well was blessed by Rev. Linda La Vasseur.
December: Daffodil bulbs
Seven volunteers helped plant 1,000 daffodil bulbs in clumps all along the lower part of the grassy bund in front of the airport.