The young people have been honing their woodworking and countryside skills through projects such as installing a new woodchip path at the Wildlife Trust’s Martins Wood nature reserve. The previous path was very muddy and uneven and difficult to use especially in the winter months. The new path created by the apprentices has improved access providing a stable and safe path for visitors to use and enjoy no matter the weather.
The team has also been busy constructing new fencing at St Lawrence and Arreton Down, and learning other traditional woodland skills such as making hurdles, besom brooms, hay rakes and charcoal.
The apprentices are employed by Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust through the Heritage Lottery funded Down to the Coast project, with additional support from the Isle of Wight Foundation.
Jamie Marsh, Reserves Manager for the Isle of Wight at Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust said:
“The apprentice team have been helping us improve the East Wight’s woodlands for both wildlife and people. Their hard work has been invaluable – as part of their apprenticeship they are learning a wide range of practical skills and techniques and learning about management and the theory behind it.
“We hope this will give them a great foundation to the start of their careers as future woodland workers and managers.”