The Londonderry Town Forest and Nutfield’s 300th Anniversary

Kent and Meredith Allen of Londonderry have been organizing a community project for the Town Forest. When first settled, Sixteen Scots-Irish families came to “Nutfield” in response to the trees in the area. There were American chestnut, black walnut, and butternut trees. Those trees were used for building houses for families, warmth and food. However, a blight eventually came through and wiped the trees out.

In May of this year, there will be a planting of new trees and small shrubs in the middle of the forest to honor the town’s 300th anniversary in 2019. The Allen’s are currently looking for volunteers and are hoping to get this project going in May of this year. They want the woods to become more pleasing to the eye, bringing more citizens into the forest. There is a lot of work to do, but with the help from the community, the project will go forward.

Not only will the project benefit the forest itself, it will also lead to a stronger community and a chance for individuals to come and work together. However; the project needs to be worked on as soon as possible. When asked about the importance of the timeframe, Meredith Allen responded saying, “It can only happen this year in preparation for next year. By the time we get to fall, and the ground begins to freeze, we are hoping that it’s going to be in great shape for the 300th anniversary”.

The forest needs a lot of work done to get it ready for the 300th anniversary celebration next year. Not only will the plantings occur, but the forest itself needs a good clean up. “Throughout Kent’s project, he has been cutting up trees and making piles. Right now, the forest is full of small piles of wood. It looks a little bit like a tragedy, but as soon as we are able to get this underway with good weather, it will all come about to be wonderful”, said Meredith Allen.

Kent Allen is currently working on cleaning up the forest and the trees that fell down after the wind storm back in October of 2017. An entire straight line of trees came down like a domino effect and Kent has been down there every day working on it. It’s a heavy project and will still take plenty of time bring it back to its state of perfect. There have been numerous volunteer groups who have committed time over the years to help clean up the forest and pick up debris. However, now, more than ever, the forest is in dire need of help.

The Allens are hoping to have a Blessing of the Forest towards the end of the year along with picnic at the Town Common in order to celebrate the project’s success. The “Let’s Beautify our Forest” project will be underway soon and with the help of volunteers, the forest will be ready and looking beautiful for 2019.

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