Latest news


More Elm news 

14 June 2021

Despite the cold spring this year Fineshade's Elm trees seem to be thriving. Many of the mature trees appear to have had a very heavy crop of seeds and most of the young trees planted in 2019 are putting on good growth inside their green protective tubes.

Today samaras were gathered from the very healthy group of trees at the far northern tip of Fineshade Wood. These are the Huntingdon Elm species, Ulmus vegata, and show no sign at all of being susceptible to Dutch Elm disease. Some of these samaras will be sown and planted here in Fineshade, but many were also delivered to be grown in a tree nursery in nearby Ketton. We hope to have a lot more seedlings available for planting out next year.

You can read lots more about Fineshade's elms here

An entire community of people has come together to oppose the plan to convert the meadow at Top Lodge into a camping site. Objections have been surging in to the new North Northants Council from people who visit Fineshade regularly - both those who live nearby and from much further afield, from people who live and work here, from those who value its rich biodiversity, from those for whom Fineshade has become an invaluable green lung in difficult times.

There have been really important objections from official consultees, particularly from our Parish Council, the Forestry Commission, the Wildlife Trust BCN, the Northanst Bat Group and the Campaign for Dark Skies, but also from the county's Ecological Adviser and Community Safety Officer.

We now await the Planning Officer's report and expect that the application will be decided by councillors of the new North Northamptonshire Council at a planning committee meeting no earlier than 19th July.

Please see full details of the application and how to object here.

The closure date for receipt of objections has been extended further.

Opposition to "Change of use"

20 May 2021

Proposed glamping pods - again!

9 April 2021

It seems that the field in front of Top Lodge is again under threat as the owners try to exploit it as a holiday camp. This is the 5th planning application they have made since 2012 - the previous four were either defeated or withdrawn in the face of strong opposition, not least from the East Northamptonshire Planning Authority.

This week our local parish council heard of the latest application, though no public announcements have yet been published. The application may be viewed here .

Enter the reference number NE/21/00388/FUL

There you will read about the 15 glamping pods, a warden’s caravan,  an unspecified number of camping sites, a car park and new roadway, no toilets, (!) etc.

Friends of Fineshade are opposing the application once again. If you feel able to help please Join the Friends and you will be sent updates and details about how you could help.

A new view of Tixover

24 March 2021

Regular visitors to Fineshade who follow the purple signs of the Dales Wood trail will know that, after the very pleasant downhill section from Top Lodge, there comes a long straight uphill part - a considerable slog that some folks refer to as Heartbreak Hill!  Now there is a real reward when you get to the top - not just a picnic bench but a magnificent view to the north.

30 years ago this vista was one of the highlights of that walk and the hilltop was known as Tixover View. But over the years trees and scrub grew up and gradually the landscape was obscured. So in 2019 when the new Forest Management Plan was being drawn up, Friends of Fineshade suggested that the view should be re-instated. Local Forestry England staff listened, agreed and wrote it into the plan. And this week the scrub has been cleared, carefully leaving some specimen trees such as Wild Service and a remarkable erect Crab Apple. 

So when you reach the top of the hill, while you recover your breath you can savour the view across the Welland Valley towards Tixover and away into Rutland at least as far as South Luffenham Heath on the skyline.  Great cooperation between Forestry England and local people has brought this about, allowing us all to appreciate this part of the Rockingham Forest landscape.