If you go down in the woods next month

NEXT month heralds a time of free family events in Borders woodlands.

Organised by the grassroots environmental charity Borders Forest Trust (BFT), they are part of the trust’s 15th anniversary celebrations which coincides with the United Nations’ International Year of Forests.

The season is being launched at BFT’s annual Woodland Family Fun Day, this year at Darnick Community Woodland near Melrose, on Sunday August 7 from 11am. Participants will have the opportunity to learn new skills and BFT staff will be on hand to answer questions about woodlands.

The trust’s communications officer, Louisa Finch, said: “Darnick is a really interesting community woodland where local group members have been hard at work planting trees, creating paths and holding special events. They recently had a wooden shelter installed and have also planted an orchard.

“We are excited to be holding our open day there and are looking forward to having local experts on hand to showcase skills like traditional fire lighting, green woodworking and willow weaving.”

Later in the month, the trust’s community liaison and education officer, Anna Craigen, will lead scavenger hunts, pond dipping, nature detective work, den-building, and other games and crafts for children to help them learn about woodlands and wildlife in Gordon and Wooplaw Woods.

Ms Craigen said “We hope that families will come along and take part in loads of different fun activities. They’ll be able to search high and low for creepy-crawlies, have a go at making a den, learn woodland crafts and try some nature tracking activities.”

Dates for the children’s events are August 11 at Gordon, August 12 at Wooplaw and August 15 again at Gordon

There will be a bug and insect hunt at Corehead on August 23 and the month of events rounds off with a family fun day at Wooden Anna Community Woodland in Kelso on August 27 when there will be archery demonstrations, green woodworking, willow weaving and activities for dogs.

The programme is supported by Forestry Commission Scotland.

Booking for children’s events is essential: more information from Anna Craigen on 01835 830750 or email anna@bordersforesttrust.org For more information see www.bordersforesttrust.org