West Stormont Woodland Group

West Stormont
Woodland Group

Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO) SC051682

Join us today to bring Taymount Wood and Five Mile Wood into community ownership

Catch up with WSWG news

We are a Community Project which means that without local support we won’t be able to go forward with plans to bring Taymount Wood and Five Mile Wood into Community ownership. You can read here about our latest progress, some of the projects and activities we’re involved in and our ideas going forward. Also here  are some wonderful blogs for WSWG from Margaret Lear and The Barefoot Woodland Wanderer!

You can go back through the archives from 2018 to learn more about our whole journey so far to bring Taymount and Five Mile Wood into community ownership.

Please join us and let’s make this happen together.

West Stormont Woodland Group

“Little Acorns, Great Oaks” by Margaret Lear

It’s a bit like walking on ball bearings in some woods this year. They slide away under your feet and you slide with them, temporarily on arboricultural ice, until crack-crack-crunch, and you’ve squashed them. The little oak-trees-in- waiting. Acorns. Acorns galore. 2020 is what’s called a “mast year”, when all the oak trees seem to produce more acorns than it is possible for the squirrels, mice, jays and other nut-inclined creatures to harvest or store.

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West Stormont Woodland Group

Monthly Community Update for December 2020

West Stormont was the name used in medieval times to cover the parishes of Auchtergaven, Kinclaven, Logiealmond, Moneydie, Redgorton (Stanley) and the Murthly portion of Little Dunkeld. West Stormont has been chosen as the most suitably inclusive title for the many communities connected to Taymount and Five Mile Woods today.
Working with local people to bring
Taymount Wood and Five Mile Wood into Community Ownership

Read More »
West Stormont Woodland Group

“Last Leaves Falling” by Margaret Lear

I pause on my way through the woods, quietening my breathing, keeping as still as I can. There is no sound, there is no wind. There should be no movement. Yet within the vascular systems of the broadleaved trees that bound the track, small enzyme changes are at work, invisible changes that lead to letting go, abscission, leaf-fall.

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West Stormont Woodland Group

Monthly Community Update for November 2020

West Stormont was the name used in medieval times to cover the parishes of Auchtergaven, Kinclaven, Logiealmond, Moneydie, Redgorton (Stanley) and the Murthly portion of Little Dunkeld. West Stormont has been chosen as the most suitably inclusive title for the many communities connected to Taymount and Five Mile Woods today.
Working with local people to bring
Taymount Wood and Five Mile Wood into Community Ownership

Read More »
West Stormont Woodland Group

Monthly Community Update for October 2020

West Stormont was the name used in medieval times to cover the parishes of Auchtergaven, Kinclaven, Logiealmond, Moneydie, Redgorton (Stanley) and the Murthly portion of Little Dunkeld. West Stormont has been chosen as the most suitably inclusive title for the many communities connected to Taymount and Five Mile Woods today.
Working with local people to bring
Taymount Wood and Five Mile Wood into Community Ownership

Read More »
West Stormont Woodland Group

“Exits, Entrances and Crossroads” by Margaret Lear

Is there an artist in the wood?
There is, really, only one easy way into and out of Five Mile Wood – at least in October. That’s from the south end on the Stanley to New Mill cottages road – currently a bit of a no man’s land thanks to the dualling of the A9. Here the track is clear, broad, made for forestry vehicles – and you can even park! At the north end, there is also the old straight track I’ve written about before, from South Barns and beyond that, with a diversion to Bankfoot. Follow the line of this track and it will take you to Dunkeld, once a mighty ecclesiastical seat. I learned last week that from Dunkeld to the wood it’s five miles – hence the name.

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West Stormont Woodland Group

“What We Choose to Eat from the Woods” by Margaret Lear

As soon as I entered Taymount Wood, I smelt mushrooms. Across in the pattering shade of the woods to my left, a family was ducking and diving and exclaiming across the ditches to each other. I could glimpse baskets, a small dog, a child or two. Great! I thought, people foraging. Good luck! With chanterelles from a previous forage in my fridge, I just wanted to walk without expectations or intent. Looking for late summer flowers, I was taken by the large numbers of Wild Angelica growing either side of the path.

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West Stormont Woodland Group

“THE MUSHROOM AT THE END OF THE WOOD” by Margaret Lear

In Anna Tsing’s book The Mushroom at the End of the World*, she tells the story of landscapes ruined – or seemingly ruined – by the greed of human activity. In particular, forests. In one unpromising forest in Oregon USA, where commercial forestry had stripped out all the trees of value and left an empty terrain of broken ground and scrubby volunteer pines, she met some mushroom hunters, refugees from Laos. They were gathering Matsutake, one of the most prized and valuable edible mushrooms in Japan and – allegedly – the first living organisms to appear from the wreckage of Hiroshima after the Bomb.

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West Stormont Woodland Group

“THE WET SIDE OF THE WOOD” by Margaret Lear

Five Mile Wood right now is a wood half-forested, half scrub and heath. When the Forestry Commission took out the last tree crop, they left a fragile fringe, largely of Scots Pine, around the north-east side of the circular path that now forms almost the only access to the main part of the wood. The Benchil burn trickles through and under the path here, on its way to the Tay, and water from the high water table of the central area percolates into a series of path- side ditches and curious water-holes made by a forestry digger. This is the wet side of the wood. While the trees must take up a lot of water, their canopy also prevents evaporation, and after recent heavy rain, the glades and ditches are alive with summer flowers and butterflies.

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West Stormont Woodland Group

“CREEPING UP ON KING’S MYRE” by Margaret Lear

Hot, sunshine, slight breeze – a day to cycle to a cool and shady place. We’d often thought about walking into Taymount Wood by the core footpath from Airntully, but before lockdown hadn’t considered cycling all the way from Bankfoot. We left the village on the Stewart Dairy road, in normal times screeching with haring rat-runners with no conception of cyclists or passing places, and up the steep Barns Brae. This we accomplished without pause for breath, thanks to the electric bikes! We were caught out at the top by two “proper” cyclists who had stopped to recover, and who tried very hard, in a typical show of pandemic goodwill, not to look supercilious.

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West Stormont Woodland Group

Monthly Community Update for May 2020

West Stormont was the name used in medieval times to cover the parishes of Auchtergaven, Kinclaven, Logiealmond, Moneydie, Redgorton (Stanley) and the Murthly portion of Little Dunkeld. West Stormont has been chosen as the most suitably inclusive title for the many communities connected to Taymount and Five Mile Woods today.
Working with local people to bring
Taymount Wood and Five Mile Wood into Community Ownership

Read More »
West Stormont Woodland Group

“BEES, BUTTERFLIES AND AN OLD STRAIGHT TRACK” by Margaret Lear

The things you do in a lockdown. I wouldn’t normally walk from the house to Five Mile Wood, I’d call in on my way to somewhere else, parking the car. It’s not an especially long walk, but since they felled most of the trees on the Bankfoot side, cavernous ditches and hollows have made the entrance to the wood treacherous, wet and debateable, and the track to get there goes on a bit and is not especially interesting. Or so I thought.

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