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MouseClip and Tree

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MouseClip and Tree

Our Friends:Belvoir Castle

This initiative, started in March 2008 is part of the Belvoir Estate commitment as long time stewards of the landscape to restore, conserve and protect our local environment.

It represents a chance for a large and historic estate with strong ties to the local community to form a partnership with those who share the landscape by recognising that we jointly have a responsibility towards the environment.  This project offers the chance for the Belvoir Estate to work with individuals interested in the estate, the historic woodlands or simply have the desire to support the wider environment.  Together we can help replant the woodland for the benefit of future generations.

 

This is a special opportunity to take part in the regeneration of either an ancient woodland or an avenue on the Belvoir Estate.  Both have a romantic, if tragic history, which is tied up with the history of the country as a whole.

The project will focus initially on the regeneration of Fir Hold and the restoration of Lime Avenue.  Both are open to the public meaning that the wider community can enjoy the trees planted.

 

Fir Holt

Fir Holt lies next to the Belvoir Estate car park and is easily accessible as well as being visible from the road.

The area known as Fir Holt is classified as historic woodland and can be traced back through the generations via the original Belvoir Castle records.  During this time, it has been used for hunting, for animal husbandry and more recently simply to provide protection and cover for a wide range of smaller shrubs and ground growing plants.

In 1942, the Belvoir Estate, along with many others, received a request from the War Office for wood to support the Second World War effort.  Wood from Fir Holt was used to produce Mosquito aircraft.  Clearly, the giving of the woodland for such an important task was imperative.

In addition, wood from Fir Holt was sent via train from Grantham for essential air raid shelter construction along with other war effort fundamentals. 

In the 1960’s efforts were made to replant Fir Holt by the then Duke, which can be seen along the North side of the woodland.  However, as the devastation caused two decades earlier was so huge the project stalled.  At that time, the Estate lacked the guidance and direction to formulate a strategy.  It is also fair to say that trees were simply not the priority they are today.

Under the guidance of the Forestry Commission, the Estate now plans to breathe new life into this historic woodland.  Fir Holt is an ideal site for a project of this nature since it consists of trees of varied age and in varying condition.  It therefore provides a wonderful environment for replanting.

This regeneration project aims to restore Fir Hold to its original glory.  This beautiful setting will be protected by the Estate and the Forestry Commission for future generations to enjoy.

 

The Lime Avenue 

Lime Avenue runs alongside the public highway.  It can be enjoyed by visitors to Belvoir Castle as well as viewed from the road. 

Lime Avenue was planted with Lime trees in 1952 to celebrate the coronation of the new Duke.  The trees provide a magical avenue, each with its own mini eco system.  The Avenue now requires restoration to ensure it survives and continues to delight future generations. 

Belvoir Estate, with the guidance of the Forestry Commission, wishes to renew the avenue by continuing the planting to its natural end and by replacing diseased and unhealthy specimens.

 

Why have the Belvoir Estate launched this initiative now?

The current global concern with the environment and climate change affects us all.  We all need to do more.  The Estate is “part of the landscape” in Rutland providing protection and employment for the local community.  With its special history, in more recent years it has become an attraction that draws visitors to the county. 

The present Duke and Duchess care passionately about our landscape and believe that we are all custodians for the next generation.  We all need to take steps in the right direction.  It is their intention to continue this regime of tree planting for many years.  However, this is more than simply the planting of trees, it is about raising awareness.  They want to give individuals the opportunity to join together, take a small step together and make a difference together. 

Every step will count.  Every tree will make a difference.

This is an opportunity to be part of a project that could be replicated in other areas across the country.  The Duke and Duchess are extremely proud that it is starting here and that they are giving us all the opportunity to repair damage caused nearly a century ago by war, and to celebrate the way that, as well as being beautiful, trees breathe life into our atmosphere.

 

Why partner with TreeTwist?

TreeTwist is a company that operates along stringent ethical lines and has a proven track record in this area working with one of the UK’s most successful reforestation charities. 

The core TreeTwist activity plants trees in the Caledonian Forest, however, as TreeTwist is based in Stamford, the decision to work with the Belvoir Estate was an easy one.  They are delighted to be involved in this project to generate awareness and interest in the wider need to focus on our environment.

TreeTwist hope that their involvement and the introduction of the Belvoir Fob will encourage people to “Give the Gift of a Tree” and take a step for the environment in a way that is different, fun and exciting and that will encourage a sense of involvement with the Belvoir Estate.  We would like people to get involved whether they live locally, have ties to the estate or simply because they are interested in the historic significance of this piece of England.

Whatever the motivation, buying a Belvoir Fob will result in a tree being planted on the Belvoir Estate.  Together we can make a difference.

The Belvoir TreeFob is a woollen clip, which can be used as a key ring, attached to a bag, a belt or your keys.  Designed by Ingrid Tait who supplies some of fashion's top names such as Paul Smith, John Rocha, Liberty and Saks 5th Avenue. Her brief was to design a fob that encapsulated the history and uniqueness of the Belvoir Estate.   She used colours taken from the Estate palette - the blue of the peacocks, the deep pink used in so many of the state rooms.  The hand stitches in gold reflect the paintings and fabrics through the Castle, and of course the acid green leaf which represents the trees themselves.

Every Belvoir TreeFob has been hand made in the Orkneys, largely by outworkers, and we are proud that this project also supports a community of artisans. Ingrid's design is unique, every TreeFob is hand made, and they all represent a tree.