This week is, apparently, National Butchers' week in the UK. This is why the NCVs set to, with a variety of tools, to do a bit of butchery of their own. However, you need not be alarmed. No animals were hurt in the making of this blog. No - not at all. Instead they continued cutting out the remains of the very old hedge at Wood Hill Farm, a job started four weeks ago.
Regular readers will know that the NCVs made a huge impact on their first visit and, since then, farmer Miles has been removing the stumps. However - there was lots more of the hedge to do, as you can see......
The body of the hedge lay quietly awaiting the inevitable.
Ros K. made the first incision with her butcher's loppers..
Soon the whole group was busy carving.
Andrew removed this particularly juicy leg of hedge
and took it off for processing.
Very soon there were slices of hedge offal (or Hoffal) all over the place.
The incinerator was goaded into action - not easy in the rain.
However, Julia and Dave managed a blaze with just half a damp match
and one stick of kindling.
At coffee time Julia was very pleased with herself,
having bagged one of the very few decent places to sit out of the mud.
Master butcher Liz deployed the chainsaw to carve up the larger joints of hedge.
This particular side of hedge needed three NCVs to shift it.
The arrival of a box of delicious brownies
during the afternoon lifted spirits.
As the day wore on the grass wore out.
The area around the fire resembled the Somme.
Walking across the mud required much effort.
It was clear that this NCV was going
to have to do a bit of washing.
In fact it was hard to judge who was going to have to do the most!!
Back at the cars a valiant attempt was made to clean up....
...but even the power spray was struggling to remove the clag.
Three Kestrel boxes and three Bat boxes were delivered to Roy, the game keeper at the Summerstones Estate near Scarhouse Reservoir. They joined the three owl boxes delivered there a little while ago - all thanks to the hard work and the woodworking skills of Jan of the NCVs. It’s great to be able to report this sort of cooperation which can benefit the wildlife of Upper Nidderdale.