A DEAL has been agreed to create a community woodland in Malvern which will be a natural tribute to the amazing community response to Covid-19 pandemic and a memorial to those who lost their lives to the virus.
The Madresfield Estate will provide to Malvern Hills District Council an area of woodland next to Goodson Road, by the retail park in Malvern, for an initial 10-year period.
The aim will be to create an enhanced green space for the community to enjoy as well as provide a quiet space for contemplation and reflection.
The council will be responsible for maintaining and enhancing the woodland with an initial £20,000 set aside to fund work. Bids for other funding will be made to support the project.
The plan for the woodland includes improving the habitat by clearing more invasive plant species, planting native plants and installing bird and bat boxes.
The entrance will also be enhanced, benches will be installed, and footpaths extended to allow for more seating and access for pushchairs, wheelchairs and mobility scooters. Tall tree stumps will be kept and turned into carving artwork.
Coun Sarah Rouse, Leader of Malvern Hills District Council, said: “We’re grateful to the Madresfield Estate for their support and agreeing to let us use the woodland.
“We plan to work with the community to turn it into a very special place for everyone.
“We want it to be somewhere people can come and remember loved ones they’ve lost as a result of Covid-19 but also as a way of marking the amazing efforts of our NHS, communities and frontline workers who helped us through the pandemic.”
Jeremy Hill, the Madresfield Estate manager, said: “The Madresfield Estate is delighted to be working alongside Malvern Hills District Council in this initiative, and it is hoped that the woodland will provide an opportunity amongst nature for remembrance, and to reflect on the pandemic and the importance of our local community in meeting such challenges.”