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Alan & Caro Brown’s Woodland, Sunday April 23rd 2017

Reporter: Chris Fildes

This was my first visit to Alan and Caroline’s woodland paradise at Bosley near Macclesfield. I followed their directions, down Bullgate Lane, which leads towards Gawsworth, and shortly after crossing over the Macclesfield Canal with its series of locks, I spotted Andrew Walker in his bike leathers! My good deed for the day was to open the farm gate for him! He then rode off into the distance, while I trundled across the field! Shortly after rounding the woodland I saw their huge Barn, and inside was a table and chairs all set out for a picnic.

I soon discovered that this barn was originally constructed as a hanger for Caroline’s helicopter! With Bosley Cloud in view, the canal, a railway line, overhead power lines, and a huge field as a landing strip, the site was perfect for navigational purposes. I can’t remember exactly, but I think they own over 35 acres of land, some of which is leased to a local farmer for his sheep and yes, ... there were spring lambs in the next field!

After sampling the delicious cakes on offer, I was whisked away (still munching) by Alan on the back of the quad bike to join the others as Caroline guided them through their woodland paradise, with its meandering stream.

The spring flowers were in bloom, Golden Saxifrage, Wood Anemones, Celandine and native English Bluebells to name a few. We were invited to ‘have a go’ at using the wood chipper which makes light work of clearing away any dead wood. So Andrew volunteered, (chip off the old block and toys for boys came to mind)! but I suspect Caroline enjoys mucking in too! And her expression as she speeded across the field on the quad bike said it all! Alan’s expertise of Hedge laying was apparent too.

So, if you go down to the woods some-day you’re sure of a big surprise!

Thanks so much Alan and Caroline for inviting us, I had a lovely afternoon as I’m sure we all did.

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