Andy Pennington our conservation consultant is moving on to pastures new and in this article we wanted to say ‘Thank you’ to him and all the conservation volunteers who have worked so hard in all weathers to make the estate at Minsteracres a better place for all to visit and enjoy.

Sitting in 110 acres, the estate at Minsteracres takes some managing.  Over the last 7 years Andy and his small band of hardy conservation volunteers have made a significant impact for all who visit Minsteracres.  From opening up long disused woodland paths in the Shrubbery, planting thousands of trees, the creation of a human sun dial for reflection to improving habitat for protected species like water voles, Andy and his team have enhanced the estate at Minsteracres for current and future visitors alike.

His latest and recently completed project has been the creation of a heritage woodland trail in the Shrubbery funded by the Heritage Fund (formerly Heritage Lottery Fund).  1.5km of woodland path has been created opening up new vistas in the woodland for our visitors to enjoy.  Three benches constructed from oak and larch trees harvested from our woodland have been installed along the length of the trail and at each there is an information board.  These will provide an opportunity to learn more about the immediate surroundings whilst delighting in the inspiration and tranquillity that only nature can instil—if we know how to listen and observe. 

“I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Minsteracres.  Managing the estate grounds has been a joy and I count myself lucky to have been given the opportunity.  I will miss the grounds but the thing I will miss most is working with the volunteers.  They bring the real beauty to Minsteracres. Whatever the weather, whatever the task, each week we have worked together.  It has been a privilege to share my time at Minsteracres with them.”

What is undeniable is that all this work could not have happened without the many hours and dedication that Andy and a core group of volunteers have contributed in the last 7 years.  To them we say “Thank you” and we wish you well for the future!