Project volunteer Rosalie Bullock has carried out extensive research at Fennels Wood, formerly known as Fennel's Wood, which is an ancient woodland.
The wood's history can be traced back to the thirteenth century when it was sold by Roger Taylor of Little Marlow to Robert Fitzneel. It is thought that the name of the wood is derived from his name.
It has changed ownership many times over the centuries and was owned in succession by the Knight's Templar of Bisham Abbey, The Knight's Hospitallers and generations of the Carrington family. Though still in private ownership, it is now managed by Chepping Wycombe Parish Council as a public amenity.
The wood consists mainly of beech trees that stand at about 80 ft high, are long and straight suggesting that they were planted for the furniture industry which thrived nearby for 250 years until its decline in the 1960s.
In the late sixties the M40 motorway opened and split the wood into two
separate parts, an upper and a lower part, connected by an underpass. A great deal of the wood was excavated for the roadway and the traffic from it creates a lot of noise. Nevertheless, it is a wood of great charm and visual beauty and must be preserved for future generations to enjoy.
Fennels Wood also inspired the following artwork entered in the 2008 Special Woods art competition:
As a visual artist, Rosalie was so inspired by Fennels Wood that she has published a book all about it. Copies are available for £3.99 plus P&P from Rosalie: call 01628 526984 to order your copy.
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