Viking Forest Project




Golden Wood and wildflower meadow ... For our children's, children's, children


About Viking Forest Project

Viking Forest Project was born out of several meetings with the Green Light Trust, an environmental charity that works locally in schools and communities.  
Their People Planting Team is made up of environmentalists, trainers and performers and draws on over ten years experience and expertise developed with Forests for Our Children, Green Light's own successful project in Suffolk - and its nationwide schools programme for The Woodland Trust.
What's in a Name?
The name, Viking Forest Project, comes from the logo used by Shotley Primary School depicting a Viking Longboat and was chosen by the Steering Group from a selection of names offered by our local children.  

We are growing our own woodland and wildflower meadow and our aim is to be part of a nationwide patchwork of enriched landscapes and neighbourhoods.  We will focus on:

  • Children: inspiring children and young people through active and creative participation
  • Community: developing community spirit through full and long-term involvement
  • Wildlife: planting only native and naturalised trees to provide rich havens for wildlife
  • Global Kinship: fostering environmental links with communities of different cultures
We are kindly supported by
  • Babergh District Council
  • Shotley Parish Council
  • Suffolk Coast and Heaths Project
  • Suffolk County Council
  • Suffolk Environmental Trust
  • Local groups and individual sponsorship

Golden Wood consists of approximately two acres of agricultural land which was purchased in 2004 from local landowners and supporters, Richard and Hazel Wrinch. This land will be held in perpetuity as woodland and wildflower meadow by the local community.

On the left hand side of Golden Wood as you look north, you will see the graceful curve of over 1300 native hedging plants comprising - hawthorn, blackthorn, myrobalan plum, dog rose, field maple, dogwood, hazel and holly, with crab apple at intervals. These were planted in the spring of 2004 and were funded by Suffolk Coast and Heaths project. In time it will provide food, shelter and good habitat for many nesting birds while the open rides following the footpath will favour many species of insects including butterflies and dragonflies.
The older children in Shotley primary school planted over twenty trees, including small-leaved lime, alder, oak and hornbeam and in the spring of 2005 a further three hundred trees were planted. Most of the oaks have been grown on from acorns gathered from local, veteran trees.
Over sixty species of wildflower can be seen throughout the season with good numbers of primroses during the spring.  There is a single cut of the vegetation once the wildflowers have set their seed and this is raked away to reduce the fertility of the land. This will promote many species of wildflowers which are less able to withstand nutritious soil and more competitive plants which thrive under those conditions.
Directions to Golden Wood

If coming by car, please park at the Village Hall and walk through Orwell View Road. The footpath to the site runs between Orwell View Road and Garden Close and down through the field.

Warning - the surface of the bridge at Golden Wood is now so smooth that any rain or dew on it makes the surface VERY slippery. Please hold on tight when crossing. Thanks to the local resident who alerted us to this hazard.

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