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Job – Voluntary Orchard Manager

Friends of Bourne Wood: Voluntary Orchard Manager

The Friends of Bourne Wood (FOBW) established a community orchard on land adjacent to Bourne Wood in 2012. The orchard is now fully planted with a diverse mixture of fruit trees, many of which are sponsored by local people or organisations. The varieties planted range from old local ones to well-known varieties. A bed of raspberries has also been included, as an extra interest. A wildlife pond has recently been commenced.

The day to day management of the orchard is managed by volunteers ultimately overseen by the committee of FOBW the latter which includes representatives of the Forestry Commission (FC) from whom the land is leased. Weekly work parties take place between 10 and 12 noon on most Saturdays.

The Friends are now seeking a voluntary orchard manager whose overall role will be to:

Work closely with the community orchard volunteers, FOBW and FC to deliver the objectives of the orchard management plan

More specifically the role will entail:

  • Undertaking the key tasks and meeting the targets from the management plan which include:
  • Complete the pond and ensure it is fenced
  • Ensure the fruit trees are pruned annually and the bases are kept free of vegetation
  • Ensure the paths and orchard are mown according to the stipulated frequency
  • Undertake regular checks of the benches, picnic tables and noticeboard and arrange for repairs and wood preservation, as necessary
  • Organise and plan the weekly work parties and provide management and supervision for the volunteers
  • Ensure that the necessary tools and consumables are available
  • Where necessary, liaise with and organise any third-party work parties
  • Establish an orchard working group (a sub-committee of the main FOBW committee)
  • Revise the orchard management plan in liaison with FC and the FOBW Committees
  • Attend the FOBW committee meetings and provide progress reports


  • The post holder will have delegated authority from the FOBW committee to organise and direct the work parties and establish an orchard working group sub-committee
  • ·The revised orchard management plan will need to be signed off by the FOBW committee including FC
  • Any proposed expenditure for purchase of equipment and tools will need to be agreed in advance by the FOBW Committee

Time commitment

  • Estimating the time commitment for this new role is difficult but it is anticipated that the time input will be an annual average of around 3-4 hours a week.

Key skills required

  • Strong communication and organisational skills. Familiar with networking with voluntary and statutory organisations and volunteers with a range of skills

Diplomacy skills

  • Some understanding of horticulture (fruit trees) is desirable but not essential

Please send an expression of interest to secretary@friendsofbournewoods.org.uk including a brief statement of suitability for the post by the 2nd November 2017.

Bourne Wood Booklet – Review By Dr Keith Porter

Bourne Wood: A portrayal of a wood in Kesteven. This A5 full colour booklet provides an insight into the history, natural history and forestry management of Bourne Wood, an ancient woodland in south Lincolnshire. Its contribution to nature conservation and local amenity are also outlined. Dr Keith Porter, Deputy Chief Scientist at Natural England, reviews the booklet:

Bourne Wood: A Portrayal Of A Wood In Kesteven

This attractively produced booklet is a must for anyone visiting Bourne Wood in Lincolnshire.  It packs in everything you need to understand its history from 1086 to the present day and the wildlife and facilities that the Wood offers to visitors.  The colourful guide to the plants and animals of Bourne Wood offers a taster of what you can see throughout the year and provides a fully detailed list of recorded species at the end of the booklet.

greater spotted woodpacker
The colourful guide to the plants and animals of Bourne Wood.

For visitors, it gives clear detail on parking, footpaths and facilities and includes everything you need to know for an exciting day out in the wild!  This is an excellent guide to a place that is easily accessible to people from nearby Bourne and further afield – highly recommended and great value.

Hard copies of the booklet are priced at £3 + p & p and can be obtained by e-mailing rjeffegj@yahoo.co.uk; or download low resolution pdf here.


Weaving Willow Sculptures – Nicola McLean

Weaving willow sculptures in Bourne Community Orchard over the past ten days has proved to be the perfect ‘office’, (as described by my visitors) the perfect setting for this kind of creativity.

Many people have asked me how I began weaving; It all started back in 2008, having graduated with a 2:1 Fine Art Degree from Anglia Ruskin University in 2006. I was awarded a commission, after putting in a proposal to Lincoln County Council, to create a twelve foot standing willow figure.

The Lincolnshire Heritage site near Bardney, hosts the ruins of Tupholme Abbey, home to the white gowned Premonstratensian monks from 1100 to the 1500s. By the moat where residents would have fished for carp and eel, standing almost camouflage against the gnarled willows which line the banks, visitors start at his sudden presence, as they walk across the footbridge

Prior to this, I had just completed a two week solo exhibition at the Sam Scorer Gallery, by the castle in Drury Lane, Lincoln. I felt tremendously proud that my large canvasses adorned every wall and my sculptures were displayed in the spacious room. The show was the result of a two year body of work which explored a theme which inspires me greatly. Entitled ‘Between Worlds’ I had produced visual thoughts and ideas, feelings, atmospheres, both representational and abstract about aspects of spiritual ancestral beliefs and our beautiful natural world.

Carvings of oak and stone, displayed on the floor, and a suspended installation, called ‘Ancient forest’ of restored and beautified bog oaks hung from the beams. Few people realise that such bog oak findings may predate Stonehenge! I was in my absolute element and imagine my delight when I saw my name and show title advertised in the Guardian listings, with an eloquent description kindly written by a Sam Scorer Treasurer Peter Moss. www.samscorer.

More recently I had been asked to sell willow pieces at a Spring Fair Hester Cresswell was holding at her newly renovated chapel in
Haconby. (Open every Friday to purchase many sumptuous items of furniture, accessories for home and garden, including smaller willow creations) Whilst working on a stag in Somerset, in a field with a beautiful view of Glastonbury Tor, the organiser of the Healing Field at Glastonbury Festival visited and asked if I would produce a willow sculpture garden in the ‘air space’.

I was elated, needless to say I have been walking on air ever since, strange too as several years before I had formed a list of things I wished ‘to do’ before I turned fifty, one of the things on there was to do an Art Installation at Glastonbury Festival.

This brings me to a few weeks ago, when I was stuck for space to work on this willow body of work. I chatted to our Bourne’s lovely Willie McLaughlin’s wife and she had spoken to Willie who said to approach Sarah Roberts. I did rather nervously enter the orchard and approached the lovely Jayne who was so friendly and helpful. She then forwarded my request to Sarah Roberts.

Thanks to Sarah, and her lovely ma and pa, I have been so happy in residency there in the orchard surrounded by hundreds of magnificent tall Ash trees, hearing cuckoo call, watching the swarms take off to their new hives, peaceful and productive. Boxing hare, who look like they are doing the tango, doe and her stag who is yet to be completed have all materialised. I can honestly boast, as seen at Glastofest too…

Thanks to my lovely visitors, Angela Adams and her gift of honey, Bob who enlightened me of a interesting geography website, he took a photo of me making the boxing hare for his grid reference. the lovely Goff leggitts, Sally Pepper and loads of other lovely folk.

Surprisingly, I did discover many towns folk are still unaware of the Orchards existence, what a pity for them. Our Community is very privileged to have this place of beauty to visit, enjoy, relax and contemplate in. I am sure you will see me lending a hand or sculpting again here in the future, what an achievement Friends of Bourne Wood, what a joyful legacy you have made and tend still.

Words by Nicola McLean

To view Tupholme Abbey willow man, Sam Scorer Exhibition as mentioned visit www.nickimclean.co.uk or e-mail nicola.mclean@live.co.uk for commission queries.