In 1999 a local needs survey pinpointed a request by the villagers for more trees to be planted in and around the village. Unfortunately, tree avenues, trees in hedgerows and random planting proved impractical. However on hearing of our difficulties, a local land owner promptly bequeathed the Parish Council half an acre of land in the corner of what had been the cricket field.
South Northants District Council paid towards the cost of a four rail fence including two access gates, which was erected along the diagonal boundary of the plot. Subsequently a successful application was made to the Trees For Northamptonshire Grant scheme. They supplied indigenous tree varieties. 75 ash, 75 oak, 20 field maple and 30 hazel for the spinney, plus 200 hawthorn and 10 guelder rose for the hedge which were planted inside the fence. They also provided canes and plastic tree guards.
On Sunday morning, December 4th, 1999, about 50 volunteers gathered in the field to plant the new trees and create our Millennium Spinney.
The Spinney was originally maintained by Colin, Duncan and Clive Wakelin but in 2007 another access gate was provided to allow the grass contractor to carry out the work. This gate will also be the public entrance.
As the trees have grown so well the Parish Council have agreed to open The Spinney to the public for the first time for one month, in July . No dogs will be admitted. For a guide to identify the trees planted, see the Gayton Spinney Tree Guide.
Photos courtesy of Debbie Murphy.