Shipton Gorge Heritage


Our thanks to the dream team who laid another section of hedge at the end of January - great job! As bird nesting season starts in March the rest of the hedge will have to be done next Autumn when further sessions will be arranged.

Here is our programme of planned events for 2024 which is also in the Shipton Gorge Diary, but please check back on this site for future updates.

Sunday 5th May      Get up early and enjoy the Dawn Chorus in the Saunders Richardson Wood with us at 5am

Saturday 13th April  Seed bombs and Nettle Day in the Saunders Richardson Wood 11am - 1pm or later! 

Saturday 15th June  A Royal Cream Tea to celebrate the King's official birthday!  Village Hall from 3pm - 5pm  

Saturday 19th Oct   Celebrate Apple Day in the Village Hall 2pm - 4pm

Sunday 3rd Nov      Bonfire & Marshmallows in the Saunders Richardson Wood 3pm - 5.30pm

Thursday 14th Nov  Annual General Meeting in the Village Hall 7.30pm - 9pm

Sunday 24th Nov     We are hosting the Village pre-Christmas Get Together this year in the Village Hall

Sunday 1st Dec        Tree planting in the Saunders Richardson Wood 11am - 12 noon

Friday 17th Jan        Twelfth Night Wassailing in the Orchard - time to be arranged

Shipton Gorge Ltd came into existence in 2006 with the aims of preserving the historical, architectural and constructional heritage that may exist in and around the parish of Shipton Gorge and to protect and conserve the environment in and around the parish of Shipton Gorge for every ones benefit.
In other words it was set up to manage and protect assets within the parish of Shipton Gorge so that they remain under the common ownership of residents and are managed for the benefit of the residents and according to their wishes.

In 2007 it became a registered charity (No 1121571) and subsequently its name was changed to Shipton Gorge Heritage to better reflect its purpose. 
There are now over 100 members of the charity and its current trustees are:
Anne Crowe (Acting Chairman)
Mary Boughton (Secretary/Treasurer)
Christine Hewlett
Christine Huxtable 
Jo Scarlett
James Raybould
Shaun McLaughlin 

In 2006 there was a move to purchase land below the church and to reinstate it as an orchard, which historically it had once been.  Its purchase was achieved through fund raising, donations and loans and now we are fortunate to have an Orchard which is getting more mature and productive. Old varieties of apple trees including cider apple trees have been planted, and villagers can now savour the different apples and medlars as they ripen.  The public footpath from Brook Street to St Martin's Church is through the Orchard and it is well used by many walkers, giving them the opportunity to admire our village orchard.
As well as the Orchard, Shipton Gorge Heritage also hold a 999 year lease for the Saunders Richardson Wood. The Wood was bequeathed to the Woodland Trust some 30 years ago by Nicky Saunders who lived at Lower Lynch with the stipulation that it be kept as a wildlife haven, with a covenant limiting access. In 2010 the Woodland Trust changed its focus and decided to lease small woods such as the Saunders Richardson Wood to suitable local organisations and after protracted negotiations Shipton Gorge Heritage signed the lease in December 2012. Access to the Wood is limited to members of Shipton Gorge Heritage for specific purposes, but we are endeavouring to find a way to widen access..  Our management of this previously very neglected 2.72 acre (1.1 hectacre) wood has already made progress with a 5 year Management Plan being adopted, resulting in some on-going necessary tree felling and coppicing having taken place. In 2016 bird, bat and dormice boxes were put up in the wood, having been sponsored by residents whose names are engraved on their boxes, and an owl box which can be seen from the lane as you walk past.  The on-going management and stewardship of the wood is an exciting project which will keep us busy for many years to come.  We are trying to increase diversity of species and pollinator insects and so are very pleased that Lucy and Chanelle Dunstan-Beasley have placed two bee hives in the wood which we hope will produce more Heritage Honey later this year.  A lot of work was done in the wood over the past few winters with over 50 trees and saplings planted, new entrance areas at the gates and some felling to improve the glades and remove ash dying from die-back.  Expect to see more working parties in the wood this winter as we continue to work on its maintenance and diversity.   
We would be delighted if you join this village organisation and you will be pleased to know there is no membership fee, but donations are most welcome. By joining you will be able to get involved in any way that you may wish in our two different projects be it by actively assisting in the Wood or Orchard by, for example, taking part in maintenance. and work days on both areas of land, or simply to enjoy these areas.. We need to raise around £2,500 each year to run the charity and so we also welcome suggestions and assistance for fund raising activities. Above all membership alone will give support to our village charity, although regular donations are always helpful and are a good way for those who are unable to take part in the more physical activities to support our work.

For further details of our charity and its projects and details of our trustee meetings, which are open to the public, please contact

Mary Boughton, Secretary, on 07785-948386 or email

Anne Crowe, Acting Chairman, email to