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     Roughmoor Spinney






The history of the spinney

The uses of ash wood


Roughmoor Spinney in Whilton Village has been open to the public since 2000, and has been developed, maintained and managed by a Spinney Management Group (SMG) comprising volunteers from the Parish.  You are encouraged to visit and enjoy it but also be vigilant of any hazards that may be in the area, particularly following periods of inclement weather when there can be occasions where trees or branches may have fallen and have yet to be cleared away.  If you do notice anything that may be a danger, please report it to the Parish Council clerk by email.
Latest News

Hopefully you have been down to the Parish Spinney during the summer.  I know the Pre-school group have and are making good use of it.  I look forward myself to introducing it to my 5 year old granddaughter as one of the most memorable play areas of her older cousins!

Work parties have continued on a monthly basis to ensure all is kept as safe and accessible as possible, in line with the monthly risk assessments.  The stream is at its lowest at the moment and the pond shallow, but there is a depth of mud below so needs to be ONLY viewed from the platform.  This time we have renewed a support for the raised walkway and cleared the upper path of encroaching grass.  There is another work party planned for early September.

However, such a living, growing area never stands still, so after 20 years, the Parish Council has had a tree specialist consultant look at our trees and, after considering his recommendations to remove a number of older trees and reduce the height of others -11 in all - we have given a tree surgeon a contract to do this during September.  The actual date is not yet fixed as weather and other work affect when they can start, but notices will be posted on the notice boards of both Spinney and village, and of course the Pre-school group informed. It will take about a week to complete, with log piles for insects dotted about the Spinney.

Brash from the trees will be chipped.  Some of this will be used to firm up the paths when too muddy.

There will also be a small amount of logs from one ash tree.  If you would like a share of this, please let me know.

After this we are hoping to have a group to put together a development plan for planting of both young trees, shrubs, and some woodland flowers. If you would like to be involved in this, or have suggestions from things you have seen or valued elsewhere, please let me know.

If you are interested in joining the work parties, once they resume, or for further information about the Spinney, please contact Keith Hiscock, Parish Councilor  (email)

(1 September 2021)


Some time ago, about 300 trees were planted across Daventry District.  This is part of the Woodland Trust's Big Climate Fightback initiative - a campaign to get one million people to join the fight against climate change by pledging to plant a tree during National Tree Week.  That week ended on 1st December 2019.

National Tree Week is the UK's largest tree celebration, inspiring communities across the UK to plant thousands of trees every year since 1975.  Marking the start of the tree planting season, the campaign has its roots in the response to the Dutch Elm Disease crisis of the 1960s, which wiped out more than 20 million of our most significant landscape trees.  People came together to "Plant A Tree in ‘73", and every year since, organisations, professionals, schools and our amazing network of volunteer Tree Wardens have planted trees around the country to lay down roots for a tree-filled future.

Whilton Parish Council joined the campaign and received a pack of native trees, namely Crab Apple, Field Maple and Hazel.

Most of these are now in the Spinney and were planted by volunteers and the Pre-School children.


Over autumn 2019, members of the Spinney Management Group working in partnership with the Parish Council were able to organise three work parties, with volunteers from the village too.  The pond was cleared and the overgrowth removed. Trees were pruned, and work began on clearing out the stream with the aim of preventing blockages.  Some work was done on weekdays as well as weekends, according to the times offered by volunteers.  A new raised walkway was professionally installed by a contractor in March 2019 using grants from the Parish Council, Daventry District Council and funds held by the Spinney Management Group, now replaced by the Parish Council.  This makes the whole Spinney more accessible whatever the weather and the viewing platform at the pond gives much better access for observations there.

We would like to thank all who have given their time and energy.