Wollaton - Harrison's Plantation
w/e 12 January 2014
All of this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490

Harrison's Plantation

In the quiet days after Christmas at the beginning of each new year; we're often drawn to a local park be it Victoria, Shipley or Wollaton armed as usual with the camera. This year was no exception and we made our way once again to Wollaton but it wasn't for the Deer Park that we headed this time but a small Nature Reserve that goes by the name of Harrison's Plantation.

Raleigh Pond

We entered the site from one of two entrances off Lambourne Drive and almost immediately were on the southern edge of Raleigh Pond. Now popular with anglers as a fishing pond it is thought to be a former clay pit.
First Bridge
A path circles the pond and we would return to Lambourne Drive via the northern side of the pond but we continued the outward route beyond the water crossing the first of several footbridges.
Old Coach Road

Harrison's Plantation is in two sections and Raleigh Pond occupies approximately half of the first part. We exited (top right) that part and crossed Old Coach Road (above left) to enter the longer narrower second part. Old Coach Road continues to the north as a bridle path (bottom right) and a drive to what a leaflet describing a circular walk from Wollaton Hall calls "a mock Palladian house".

Moss covered logs line the boundary of part of the path through the woodland and also provide a welcome habitat for the insect life in the Nature Reserve.
Meandering Path

The path undulates and meanders through the site and passes over several more footbridges over a small stream.
Over The Streem

The path crosses backwards and forwards over the stream as they both twist and turn through the Plantation.

The stream seen here from one of the footbridges, also showing here a small waterfall, flows from Martin's Pond which marks the western extremity of Harrison's Plantation.
Alice's Route?

The trees in the Plantation are mainly sycamore but there are examples of ash, wild cherry, oak and other species too. Owned by Nottingham City Council, it is managed by the Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust and work is being done to reduce the dominance of the sycamores. This particular tree at the side of the path brought Alice In Wonderland and a giant rabbit hole to mind!
Martin's Pond

The exit from Harrison's Plantation leads directly to Martin's Pond which we visited in May 2011 and images from then can be viewed here so we turned back here and retraced our steps back towards Lambourne Drive.

Tree Support
After crossing Old Coach Road again we arrived at a fork in the path and turning left we continued to walk around the northern side of Raleigh Pond. As we approached the pond again this tree appeared to be a casualty of the recent gales and high winds but even though it is receiving some support from another tree, its roots appeared to be firmly embedded in the soil.
Bird Watching

At one time of day, the woodland extended much further north but the Plantation (and Martin's Pond) is now surrounded by housing. Raleigh Pond however is still a good place to observe the bird life which includes a large variety of species including commonly seen mallards and Canada geese whilst in the surrounding woods the great spotted woodpecker, kingfisher, nuthatch, and spotted flycatcher among others have been sighted.

For more information about Harrison's Plantation and a map of the site see the Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust's website - click here to open a new window.

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