West Mendip Rewilding Project

Based in Shepton Mallet, this project houses our food bank market garden, built next to one of our young food forests and managed by volunteers, to grow regenerative produce within an organic system, for the local food bank in Shepton Mallet.

We would like to give special thanks to Gavin and Erica at Rock Farm for letting us use their home for this community project.

Mr Vernon Hill is a very conscious and responsible landowner who runs an Olympic clay target ground in the heart of the Mendips.

Mr Hill has many wooded areas that are well managed with habitat creation in mind. However, with the recent announcement from the Mendip County Council regarding plans to remove large amounts of Ash trees due to the ash dieback, he has become concerned about the impact this could have not only on the local wildlife but also on his farms’ carbon sequester goals.

With that in mind, Mr Hill approached us and asked for guidance on the matter… Naturally, we all agreed that native species were the clear choice and we were able to provide several hundred trees from our nursery, ranging from English Oaks to Rowan and Crab Apple. After surveying the surroundings, a patch of land was identified as a suitable location on the farm. Given its steep gradient, it would be more productive and environmentally beneficial for this 6-acre patch to be rewilded as woodland instead of remaining as agricultural land. As a bonus, the land runs down to a large natural pond that is brimming with life.

The track towards the field has recently had a large amount of new native hedging planted and looks fantastic. As a thank you for our help, Mr Hill has arranged a donation of woodchip via his friends at MTL tree surgeons’ group. This will be spread out over our current and future projects.

The new area of woodland will provide crucial habitats for local wildlife, so it must remain untouched by the public, this woodland was planted by the local community.