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ASBP Donate 100 Trees to Caerphilly Woodlands Trust

ASBP donate much-needed trees to celebrate 100th member milestone

The non-profit sustainability organisation The Alliance for Sustainable Building Products (ASBP) donated 100 trees to the Caerphilly Woodlands Trust to celebrate reaching their 100th member milestone.

Now the breeding and nesting season is over, this autumn the Trust will start planting the much-needed Holly and Hedgerow trees in their local woodlands Coed y Werin.

ASBP has a growing presence in Wales and over the past few years has been collaborating with Dylan Jones at Caerphilly Council for their annual awards programme. Last year’s sculptural awards were handmade from local Ash & Cherry at a workshop in Aberbargoed by Dylan and MA design student Phoebe Oldfield, and it is hoped that the 2022 Awards trophies can be made from thinnings from Coed-y-Werin.

Jayne Garland, Chair of Caerphilly Woodlands Trust, was thrilled to receive these young trees and said work to start placing them within the gaps in Coed y Werins hedgrows will start this coming Sunday.

Aproximately 19.4% of Welsh land area is covered by woodlands and trees. It is estimated this soaks up 1.84 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) each year.

Trees also help clean harmful pollutants from the air; it is estimated Welsh woodlands removed 16,211 tonnes of PM10 in 2015.

Trees are not only an essential part of a healthy ecosystem they also play a great role in making people feel better, improving health and wellbeing, increasing our oxygen uptake and improving our lung and heart systems. That’s why woodlands are a great place to visit or even volunteer.

said Jayne

Find out more about ASBP and their work at https://asbp.org.uk. or
contact Caerphilly Woodlands Trust to become an ‘environment improver’ by becoming one of their amazing volunteers.

Mindfulness & Wellbeing

Caerphilly Woodlands Trust is thrilled to be hosting a series of mindfulness sessions delivered within our woods at Coed y Werin by a woodland mindfulness practitioner.

Research has shown spending time in woodlands can lower heart rate and blood pressure, improve oxygen uptake, lung and heart sytems are improved, reduced stress hormone production, boost the immune system, and improve overall feelings of wellbeing.

These sessions have been sponsored by Welsh Government SMS rural development fund as part of the Caerphilly Landscape Partnership Project in partnership with CCBC.

Places are limited & free to members and volunteers or £10 to non members which will also provide you with a one year CWT annual membership. More events like this are planned – a good reason to join.

To pre book a place on these sessions (pre booking essential) please contact Chrispartridge@smallwoods.org.uk or telephone 07759 954 088

Mindfulness Sessions

Coming soon to Coed y Werin

If you are interested in attending six weekly sessions of mindfulness in our woodland contact us to learn more

It can be easy to rush through life without stopping to notice much.

Paying more attention to the present moment – to your own thoughts and feelings, and to the world around you – can improve your mental wellbeing.

Some people call this awareness “mindfulness”. Mindfulness can help us enjoy life more and understand ourselves better. You can take steps to develop it in your own life by joining our sessions coming soon to our woods.

Places limited

Preparing for our work schedule

Each year our work season starts in September and allows us to work in our Woodland to the end of March the following year. This enables us to manage our woodland landcape without disturbing nesting wildlife.

A little bit of clearing required at our gate to provide a proper welcome to visitors

Nesting season here in the UK can last from February to the end of August depending on location, species and weather and is an exciting time for wildlife fans.

As a responsible woodland organisation we, at Caerphilly Woodlands Trust, abide by the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and the European Habitats Directive 1992, which means we plan our work schedule outside of nesting season and we never touch a site with an active nest.

The edge of the Rhondda No2 Coal seam

Yesterday evening we met with Ben Evans from the British Institute for Geological Conservation (BIGC), National Museum Wales to talk about what needed to be done around our Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) the areas of exposed and interesting geology within our woods.

Many people will never have seen where coal comes from so the BIGC with our volunteers some years ago excavated an embankment in the heart of our woods and cut away a nine metre high basin.

Visitors to our woodlands can see the Rhondda No2 coal seam without having to venture underground.

Ben Evans



Together we walked through each area and discussed the clearing of green growth over the rocks and what needed to be left and what needed a more concentrated plan of work.

What a super evening it was to walk the woods, sun dappled and brushed by a gentle breeze.


Looking through the tree canopy at the evening sunshine

Into the woods

We had a great morning exploring our Woodland with around 30 amazing School Children from Hendredenny School and their teachers. We were also joined by Steve Chamberlain from Llais y Geodwig and Kevin Eadon-Davies CCBC Countryside Officer.

We learnt about the history of our Woods and how it once was used to extract clay for making local bricks for the miners houses. This clay was carried on a narrow guage train along the dram track to be made into bricks and where there still remains an old chimney stack on the site where those bricks were once made. However over the centuries coal, iron ore, stone and clay have all been worked on this Coed y Werin site creating the many wet areas we use as ponds today.

The bridge over where the dram track would have been.

We explored the geology site where you will find over 350 million years of geological history revealed in the exposed rocks. We looked in the loose rubble for fossils that had been trapped in the layers of coal, mudstone and ironstone, formed when tropical swamps covered the area in prehistoric times.

We went on to learn about the rare and unique species of wildlife, flora and fauna found in our woods and the Children took rubbings from the posts installed in key areas indicating what could be found in those places.

We also looked at the many different tree types with our leaf & branch spotters and leaf ID wheels. We appreciated natures way in creating a beautiful tree canopy, dormice could travel through this canopy safely getting around the woods without having to cross on the woodland floor.

The Woodland Canopy

The Children then walked around the Long Pond discovering the waterfall and they learnt of the seasons and how that affects the woods and its inhabitants.

Concluding at the Bench we all sat and had lunch in the sunshine. It was a super morning, full of laughter and questions. It was a pleasure to show Team Hendredenny around our Woods.

Caerphilly Woodlands Trust are an active member of the Sustaining Caerphilly’s Landscape Partnership and have made brilliant use of this funding to help the local community explore and engage with a beautiful community managed woodland and learn about why this habitat is important and the wildlife that calls it home.

Said Kevin from CCBC Countryside Team

Some of the recent work, to create and install the rubbing posts and undertake an ecology report, has been funded through the Welsh Government Rural Communities – Rural Development Programme 2014-2020, which is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the Welsh Government and supported by Caerphilly County Borough Council, the Sustaining Caerphilly’s Landscape Partnership brings together landowners, community groups and organisations to deliver a range of initiatives that help sustain, enhance and make accessible the beautiful landscape, its wildlife and heritage around Caerphilly and the lower Rhymney valley

Jumping the stream by the waterfall
discovering 350 million years of history within the rocks

Young Guardians of the Planet

Ysgol y Castell year 5 have been undertaking an eco project to look after the bees.

I visited Ysgol y Castell earlier this month and gave a talk to two classes in year 5 about bees and how important they are to us and the planet. The students were so keen to do their bit to contribute to a better future that they set up their Bee Bomb Business. The fruits of their hard work produced £250 which they kindly donated to us here at our Woodland Trust helping to keep Coed y Werin a sanctuary for nature.

We talked about the variety of pollinators and their habitats, how they are under threat and how everyone can take small steps to make a positive difference

We tasted some delicious honey my bees produced last year and I explained how the bees had made it. I hope I didn’t put them off this fabulous natural food packed with goodness.

After tasting some of the honey the students each made individual bug hotels from flower pots, dried reeds, twigs, stones and hay.

Thank you Year 5 Ysgol y Castell and a huge thank you to Miss Curran for organising it. We look forward to welcoming you to our woodland, Coed y Werin, soon.

Paper & Crayons in the Woods

Bring your children along with paper and caryons to try out our woodland rubbing posts

We have had a lot of tasks to plan for, most of which we can’t start until after nesting season in September but one great task we have been able to do was to install a number of Rubbing Posts for visiting children to take rubbings of the types of interesting things that flourish within our woodland. We have 10 posts in all.

As you will see they look great and help visitors along the trail spot key animals, plants and trees. Download audio trails https://www.caerphilly.org/about-us/ you will spot the audio key sites along the trail to help you understand the history behind this great SSSI site which means it’s a special site of scientific interest.

The geology of the site is considered of great importance being one of only two remaining places where these extensive sequences of Upper Carboniferous strata can be examined. Coed-y-Werin designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) because of this. We have a great plan ahead of us and we are always in need of willing volunteers to help us with our tasks to look after this magical place.

If you would like to become a volunteer to look after Coed y Werin feel free to either direct message us on our FaceBook page, contact us through our Website or just call 07855 239 074 and we will be thrilled to welcome you to our great team.

HRH Prince Philip 1921 -2021

On behalf of the Members of Caerphilly Woodlands Trust, I would like to extend my sincere and deepest condolences to Her Majesty The Queen on the passing of her husband, His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all members of the Royal family.

He will be remembered as a devoted husband and lifelong public servant, who put duty above self and was an example to us all.

HRH Prince Philip 1921 – 2021

We would also very much like to acknowledge a generous donation made to Caerphilly Woodlands Trust by one of our members in memory of HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

The Royal Family has asked people to consider making a donation to a charity in his memory rather than send flowers.

https://www.royal.uk/floral-tributes

The Tree Charter

Last November we made a film to celebrate Tree Charter Day.

A day for the whole of UK society to unite in celebrating the value and importance of trees and woods to people. It also marks the start of National Tree Week each year.

Communities, schools, organisations and individuals mark Tree Charter Day each year with activities and events that celebrate and reinvigorate the relationship between people and trees.

Click here to see our Tree Charter Film

These helped to define the 10 Principles of the Tree Charter, ensuring that it stands for every tree and every person in the UK:

  • Sustain landscapes rich in wildlife
  • Plant for the future
  • Celebrate the power of trees to inspire
  • Grow forests of opportunity and innovation
  • Protect irreplaceable trees and woods
  • Plan greener local landscapes
  • Recover health, hope and wellbeing with the help of trees
  • Make trees accessible to all
  • Combat the threats to our habitats
  • Strengthen our landscapes with trees

Our 17th Annual Meeting

Caerphilly Woodlands Trust had its 17th Annual Meeting on the 23rd February where after several years of steadfast and passionate leadership of our woods Avril Owen stepped down for a well earned break. Avril will still play a major role in driving forward the future of our woodland but taking over the helm Jayne Garland has committed to the task of stepping into Avril’s rather large shoes.

This past year has been a challenge for many but what has become clear is that nature rescued us during this pandemic where people sought sanctuary for their mental and physical health and wellbeing and we are determined to repay the favour by looking after our woodland and enhancing it further for our visitors and wildlife that live in our woods.

said Jayne

Click below to see and hear our message on thanks and support from our Patron Iolo Williams