Images of Fineshade Wood

 

Water and mud

 

Fineshade Wood lies on a plateau of heavy clay. When it rains here the water stays put. When vehicles, bikes, or lots of people go on it the water becomes mud.

 

These are not pretty pictures!

 

We are publishing them as a warning to potential developers of what conditions can get like underfoot in Fineshade. It's one thing to draw plans in an office in, for example, Moira or Sherwood. It's quite another thing to experience conditions out in the wood itself.  

 

Hover over the images or, better, click on any image to enlarge it and read details.    
 

Easter 2018
Easter 2018

This is the track through North Spinney

Easter 2018
Easter 2018

Water pours over the Forest Road at Dumb Bob Spinney

Easter 2018
Easter 2018

There's just nowhere for the water to go

Braided River
Braided River

A flash flood on already saturated clay. Holiday cabin here?

Wet Caravan Park
Wet Caravan Park

Put down hard standing but you'll still have standing water

Access Route
Access Route

This is the only access to Fineshade Top Lodge... and it floods

Sorry about the muc
Sorry about the muc

The FC know about the mud problems. Why don't they tell Forest Holidays?

Main walking track
Main walking track

Water collects quickly and does not flow away - it's flat ground

Is it a river?
Is it a river?

You might think this is a river - but it's not flowing anywhere

Problems for heavy vehicles
Problems for heavy vehicles

This is the effect of working when the ground's wet

Cycle Track
Cycle Track

This is an unofficial cycle track, except when it rains

Sorry state of play
Sorry state of play

Would a Forest Holidays play area be any better than this

Compacted ground
Compacted ground

Once a dip is created it will always fill with water very quickly

Don't get stuck in a rut
Don't get stuck in a rut

If any 4x4 persists in going off the hard track this is what happens.

Proposed access route
Proposed access route

This is the track where Forest Holidays proposed to bring their construction traffic.

Sad sight
Sad sight

Compacted clay gets impervious

Pond brim full
Pond brim full

This pond was overlooked by FH's surveyors and lies alongside their construction access route

Not a pond
Not a pond

This is simply surface water - not a pond at all in the summer

A pond full
A pond full

It's no wonder that most Fineshade ponds hold water right through the year, given the impervious nature of the clay

Prime location?
Prime location?

Would you like to pay over £1000 to stay here?

A Retreat?
A Retreat?

Any frequently used area soon becomes a quagmire

Hard tracks needed
Hard tracks needed

There will have to be lots of hard tracks to avoid this sort of thing.

Bike and cycle paths
Bike and cycle paths

Even little-used paths in Fineshade soon look like this

Ditch beside hard track
Ditch beside hard track

Because the land is flat ditches just collect water that cannot flow away

Springs emerge
Springs emerge

A feature of the ground here is that springs suddenly emerge. This one is new in 2016

Typical ground conditions
Typical ground conditions

Walk off the tracks in Fineshade and the water will go over your ankles unless you're very careful.

No retreat here
No retreat here

Drainage ditch which has ceased to flow right beside FH's proposed "Retreat"

A wet plateau
A wet plateau

Center Parcs decided against building here in the 1980s because of the clay. You can see why.

Pretty rippling brook?
Pretty rippling brook?

The sound of rippling water can be very attractive. The trouble is you rarely hear it in FIneshade - water doesn't flow!