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Swyncombe Down

Swyncombe Down - photo by Dave Kenny, Woodland Trust volunteerThere are about 40 beech trees along the earthwork on Swyncombe Down which can be seen from the public right of way.

With girths of about 4 metres, this grove is a special collection of trees.

The shapes of trees often give clues to their former lives and management.

The multiple stems on these trees indicate that they were managed in the past and were 'working trees'. It looks as if they have been cut about a metre up the trunk and then they have resprouted and been cut again as a form of sustainable management.

Swyncombe Down - photo by Dave Kenny, Woodland Trust volunteerThis is a low form of pollarding which is a practice usually carried out higher up the trunk, beyond the reach of browsing animals such as deer and cattle.

Wood from these trees would have been used for firewood.

This ancient earthwork called the Danish Intrenchment runs along the top of the hill. It is thought to date back to the 870 AD when the Danes reached this area before being repulsed by King Alfred.

Do you know any more recent history about Swyncombe Down and the surrounding area?

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