Walks will offer last chance to see parts of Cubbington's ancient woodland before HS2 destruction

Cubbington Action Group Against HS2 volunteers will be leading one of the last guided walks of the village's ancient woodland on Sunday.

Walkers on one of the guided walks held by Cubbington Action Group Against HS2 at the ancient pear tree in Cubbington Wood. Picture by Rosemary Guiot

This will be one of the last chances for people to see bluebells, anemones and the award-winning wild pear tree before the HS2 high-speed rail project takes away much of it from 2019 onwards.

The walks, which started in 2011, have been a popular way for the action group to show people what they will be missing once the HS2 line goes through the woodland and also for members to raise funds for their campaign against the project.

Last month, The Courier ran a feature which highlighhted the impact HS2 will have on Cubbington and the reasons behind the action group’s long-running campaign.

Rosemary Guiot, of the action group, said: “As part of the preparation for my petition to the House of Commons Select Committee asking for a bored tunnel under South Cubbington Wood, I gathered information on the amenity value of the wood to the local population.

“Local schools use South Cubbington Wood as a resource. Cubbington CE Primary runs a welly walk for all the children each year as well as other walks targeted at specific groups, eg for their current topics, such as the woodland habitat through the seasons, and to complement literacy and fire the children’s imagination. I have also led groups from Our Lady and St Teresa’s School on walks to and round the wood.

“Three out of five footpaths out of Cubbington village will be affected by construction of HS2 and a fourth will have a grandstand view of it.

“These footpaths, especially the two which lead to South Cubbington Wood, are very well used by local people 
walking dogs or just out for a stroll and by numerous ramblers’ groups from further afield.

“Although the footpaths will eventually be reinstated, we are as yet uncertain to what extent construction will affect walkers’ access to the wood itself and points beyond it.

“Most of the wood is likely to be off limits during construction. Whether schools and groups will still want to use the wood after the completion of works is debatable, due to the noise from the frequent trains.”

The walk on Sunday starts outside the King’s Head pub on Church Hill at 2.30pm lasting just under 2 hours.

Dogs are allowed on leads and wellies or strong shoes are essential as the walk is muddy.

The final walk will take place on Monday May 7.

For more information call 425283 or visit www.hs2-cubbington.net