Student’s combine history and trees in Sherwood Forest

Students studying Forestry & Arboriculture at Bridgwater College recently visited some of the oldest trees in Europe when they visited Sherwood Forest, the former Royal hunting forest and home to the legendary Robin Hood.

The group were given the opportunity to tour the forest, which contains veteran oak trees dating back more than five centuries. The tour also included the world famous ‘Major Oak’, an English oak, which has stood at the centre of the forest for an estimated 800 years and is said to have been the shelter of Robin Hood and his Merry Men.

Group in front of the Major Oak, Sherwood Forest. Left to right: Felix Grandfield, Hamish Macgregor, Ed Jefferies, Gareth Martin, Sam Graham, Elsie Flowers, Matt Farrell, Kieran Bell, Darren Chambers (Lecturer Bridgwater College).

As part of the trip, the group also visited Derwent Reservoir, which was used by the RAF in World War Two to practice the deployment of the ‘bouncing’ bomb. They were able to learn about the management of highly used wooded areas whilst improving their tree identification skills.

Matt Farrell, who is studying the Level 2 Forestry and Arboriculture course at the College said,

“We had a fantastic time looking at and learning about the management of different types of woodland, practicing and improving our tree identification as well experiencing a World War One trench.”

Darren Chambers, Associate Lecturer in Forestry & Arboriculture at Bridgwater College said,

“The trip also included a visit and tour of Sherwood Pines, a former World War One training camp, by the Forestry Commission’s Learning Ranger, Lindsey Brown. Lindsay gave an insight into the history of the Forestry Commission and the management of the plantation which was planted shortly after the First World War. This gave the students an excellent comparison between natural and planted woodland and they learnt a little bit of history as well.”