Broomfield Hospital Woodlands

Broomfield hospital is a large general hospital situated in Chelmsford, Essex, and is part of the Mid Essex Hospital Services Trust. The hospital joined the NHS Forest after taking part in tree planting in 2010. Broomfield Hospital has an extensive green estate, including two woodlands in the hospital grounds; Puddings Wood and the Long Shapely Belt.   Puddings Wood is an ancient semi natural woodland comprising 2ha and Long Shapely Belt is 1ha (amenity plantation approximately 80 years old).

An update from 2018:

A ten year management project, initiated by a legal agreement following planning permission started in July 2009.  That period is coming to a close, with no legal agreement for a further plan moving forward.  However, the Trust is proud of having this natural estate, and is aware of its corporate responsibilities in providing a therapeutic environment for all visiting its hospital facilities; internally and externally.  A new 10 year woodland management plan is being proposed.
A variety of outdoor-based activities have taken place within Broomfield Hospital’s natural estate, and coinciding with the launch of their ‘Natural Health Service Project’ a community based initiative that provides hands-on volunteering experience in a natural environment alongside sustainable living and conservation education.

A community-based vegetable garden and fruit tree orchard has been maintained since 2014, with weekly sessions every summer. The Wellbeing Terrace opened in 2015, transforming a disused tarmacked area into a relaxation area for patients, visitors and staff to all enjoy, complete with seating and activity equipment.  Two clinically led dementia gardens (Forget-me-Not & Live-Well) have been developed, providing a safe, secure and therapeutic environment for patients with dementia, their family and staff to visit.  Educational twilight bat walks have been run since 2016, providing a unique experience to a UK endangered species.  A garden is currently being developed, designed for patients visiting the cancer unit.  All projects have only occurred through the dedication of volunteers, with 100% charitable funding.

This is a fine example of how collaborative working on an NHS Forest site can effect positive change. More details abotu the project can be found in the case study case study write up. 

How much carbon do we save?

Workign with estimated numbes, we have calcuated a rough carbon sink, equating to 700 tonnes over the trees’ lifespan and around 5 tonnes of carbon offset per year.  

 

Volunteer updates

20.08.14
17.06.14
10.06.14
22.04.14
01.04.14
13.02.14
07.03.14
19.08.13
25.06.13
 

Tree count: 
637
What is the size of the planting area?: 
individual planting to gap up a 2ha and 1ha woodland on hospital grounds
Details: 
The woodlands are within the hospital grounds. The hospital has been developed under a PFI project. The woodlands are protected by a Tree Preservation Order

Comments

We had a great day with local residents and five teenagers from Enthuse Training working in the woods.  We planted four trees, put up bird food, created dead wood piles and carried out some thinning of over crowded saplings

Another good day with volunteer teenagers, local residents and the local tree warden.  Weeding the new trees was our priority.  It was the first hot day of the year and it was great to see so many staff and general public enjoying the woodland.

Clinton Chaloner, sculptor and community artist, created a wonderful stag beetle from a tree felled for safety reasons.  This beetle was created with the help of children from Southminster Primary School and was granted funded by Chelmsford Borough Council.  We hope this is beginning of our sculptor trail through Puddings Wood.

On 22 June 2011 we had another volunteer day where we cleared paths and weeded the new trees.  So grateful for the recent rain!  We have plans for a peaceful glade - watch this space!

We planted three oaks donated to the hospital from NHS Forest at their excellent conference on 25.10.11.  We gathered seeds to grow on and plant next year and we finished clearing bramble ready for our new glade.

We planted three oaks donated to the hospital from NHS Forest at their excellent conference on 25.10.11.  We gathered seeds to grow on and plant next year and we finished clearing bramble ready for our new glade.

Essex County Council Trading Standards Officers help out with our usual volunteers on 25.1.12.  They were very skilled and enthusiastic and helped create stunning dead wood sculptures, coppiced, cleared bramble and planted 12 trees.

Essex County Council Trading Standards Officers help out with our usual volunteers on 25.1.12.  They were very skilled and enthusiastic and helped create stunning dead wood sculptures, coppiced, cleared bramble and planted 12 trees.

Well done to the hard working teenagers from LOTA training who thinned out over crowded saplings in the Long Shapely Belt, made dead wood piles and improved path edging.

Thrilled to have been awarded for the Green Flag Community Award.  Well done to the team and volunteers to make this happen, and we will be building on this success following a recent successful grant application to improve access and signing.

“In support of NHS Sustainability Day of Action, two trees were planted at 14:00. These trees, a wild cherry and a field maple, will form the border of the Trust’s newest Community Engagement project… A fruit and vegetable garden.”