January 2nd 2024.
Happy New Year to everyone, from all of us at the Woodland Skills Centre.
As we look forward to 2024; let us begin with a quick round up of what has been happening at the Centre throughout 2023. The year just gone brought a few changes here, amongst these, we welcomed Lina Patel as the new(ish) Centre Manager for all our Social Prescribing work and the Traditional Craft courses. We ran over 80 courses in 2023 alone.
Do not worry. Rod is not going anywhere and continues much of the pioneering work and collaborations with organisations such as the North Wales Wildlife Trust, Prestatyn Hedgehog Rescue and Horticulture Wales, amongst many others.
Throughout last year we also continued our ongoing survey work; showing that we have healthy populations of all the 9 Reptiles and Amphibians that are native to this area. A moth and butterfly survey showed 245 species present.
Up in the woodland we have a new timber framed building, not only built by one of our courses, but also available for use by others as well as the local
community as a whole. Our woodlands have permissive public access for all to
On the main site there have been several changes. A new woodworking machine shop has been installed and our Community Support group now use this to make bird boxes and bat boxes for North Wales Wildlife Trust and Hedgehog boxes for Prestatyn Hedgehog Rescue. All of these will be available for order in the coming year.
Just before the close of the year we graded all of the roads and paths around the site, adding wheelchair access to much of the outdoor areas. We also added another hard-standing pitch, to the camp site, to allow an extra space for a motorhome.
As 2024 opens we are continuing to build on the work of last year. In addition to the bees, which we already have on site, we are developing a small holding of chickens and pigs and a market garden; which is being developed in association with Horticulture Wales. They have also helped us to construct a new polytunnel and will be further collaborating with us on our vineyard. The
intention is that our Social Support Group will use the market garden and polytunnel to grow produce to use to create, and sell, a vegetable box (which may also include eggs, honey and foraged berry jam). The Veg-box will be available, on site, from later on in 2024.
This coming year will also see no let-up in the provision of Courses. Along with our extensive current list of courses we shall be launching some new ones such as Birchbark crafts and Traditional wool crafts; in fact, three different types of felting courses will be available.
To close we would like to say a huge thank you to everyone involved in the Woodland Skills Centre in 2023. A thank you to all our staff, volunteers, coaches and teachers; and a massive, and genuinely heartfelt thanks, to all our participants and visitors. We hope to see you all in 2024.