2nd November 2017
Autumn and winter are undoubtedly the perfect times of year for a stroll underneath the trees, and for Aldershot residents there’s no better place to go than Wellesley Woodlands.
With a network of accessible, well surfaced paths of varying lengths suitable for walkers, runners, children’s buggies, cyclists, and wheelchairs, there’s plenty of natural space to explore. Each of the eight trails is well signposted and walking guides are also available to download from the website at: www.wellesleywoodlands.co.uk.
• Sycamore Trail: 1.1km circular route around the large freshwater lakes at Chalk Farm and through the beautiful wooded areas that surround the lake
• Chestnut Trail: 1.6km through the spectacular woodland of Duke’s Wood
• Willow Trail: the longest of the trails at 9.4km, offers excellent views over the Basingstoke Canal as it leads you along the canal towpath and links many of the different trails within Wellesley Woodlands such as the Oak, Plane and Beech trails
• Holly Trail and Birch Trail are accessible and a specialised wheelchair friendly footpath spanning more than 1km runs alongside the Basingstoke Canal
Laura Keighley, Wellesley Ranger for Blackwater Valley Countryside Partnership, says, “It can be tempting to hibernate at this time of year, but there’s so much to see and enjoy outside that it’s well worth wrapping up and getting out for a walk in Wellesley Woodlands.
“The changing colours of the trees are one of the most beautiful sights of the year, and there is still lots of activity among our resident animals.”
For those who are particularly susceptible to the cooler weather and shorter days, getting out for a walk provides a real boost. With two million people in the UK suffering from a type of depression called seasonal affective disorder, having open space near where they live and work can make a big difference.
Laura adds, “Some of the practical ways recommended by health professionals to help combat seasonal affective disorder are to spend time with family and friends, keep active, keep warm and get outside into natural sunlight – so why not gather your nearest and dearest, dig out your wellies and get outside in the fresh air at Wellesley Woodlands for a refreshing and restorative walk?”
Wellesley Woodlands sits within Wellesley, an exciting new development of 3,850 new homes and community facilities on the former Aldershot Garrison site being delivered by Grainger plc. The woodlands is a collection of natural areas brimming with wildlife, lush greenery and a network of footpaths on former training estate. The Land Trust is working in partnership with Grainger and the Blackwater Valley Countryside Partnership to ensure the green spaces support the new housing development, along with the wider community in Aldershot.
To stay up-to-date with events and activities at Wellesley Woodlands please visit: www.wellesleywoodlands.co.uk
Land, in particular public open space and wildlife, has always been my passion and here at the Land Trust I get to make a difference. I enjoy covering a large area of England and Wales and seeing a wide variety of sites. No site is the same, so it makes my job interesting.
Alison Whitehead, Development Manager
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