Community woodlands only work if they can draw on the broad range of support available to them. The community for our woods is located close to the woods themselves in local parishes, but also in the towns of Lewes and Hailsham, across Sussex and beyond. We are a small woodland, but like the individual trees we are connected to a much bigger network.
As the project’s moved forward we’ve realised we can be clearer about who we are and what our community woodland is all about. One aspect that we felt could be clearer was the name, and so in early 2020 we decided on a change from Vert Woods Community Woodland.
We wanted something memorable and easy to say, that helps people understand where the woods are and has the spirit of what we’re trying to do together.
The first step was to go out to members to generate a list of ideas. More than thirty came back. The Management Committee whittled these down to a shortlist of three possible names, which then went back out to members to consider.
Laughton Greenwood was clearly the preferred option. Having ‘Laughton’ in the name will help to locate the woodland for more of those people who could be getting involved. ‘Greenwood’ helps to get across our mission to restore the woods to life and put nature at the heart of our decisions.
Greenwood also echoes the ‘Vert’ in the woods’ historical name. The human heritage of the woodland is important to us, just as the natural history is, and we’re going to make sure that ‘Vert Woods’ and ‘Upper Vert Wood’ (where most of the community woodland is located) are very much part of the story wherever we tell it.
Over the course of the summer we will be changing the name wherever we need to. At first that means official documentation, this website and our social media channels (no need to do anything if you already follow these accounts).
Later on this will include the small amount of signage we have in the woodland itself, and in publicity. We hope it won’t be long before we can get everyone together and celebrate the change in the woods.
Meanwhile the Management Committee is busy putting together funding applications for further improvements to the woods, planning the summer’s harvest of timber and considering how we can make future events in the woods workable while keeping everyone safe and healthy in these strange new times.
We look forward to updating you all on progress. Keep in the loop by signing up to our email newsletter if you haven’t already.