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Viewing swaag.org website implies consent to set cookies on your computer. Full details Swaledale and Arkengarthdale Archaeology Group
Registered Charitable Incorporated Organisation Number 1155775
SWAAG Honorary President:
Tim Laurie FSA

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 *****SWAAG_ID***** 812
 Date Entered 16/06/2014
 Updated on 17/06/2014
 Recorded by Tim Laurie
 Category Tree Site Record
 Record Type Botanical HER
 Site Access Public Access Land
 Record Date 24/03/2014
 Location Coverdale. Gammersgill. Fleemis Gill. Spring Wood.
 Civil Parish Carlton Town
 Brit. National Grid SE 0476 8312
 Altitude 280m
 Geology Glacial Till over the Middle Limestone. Stream cut ravine.
 Record Name Spring Wood, Gammersgill. Ancient managed alderwood with an associated iron bloomery industry.
 Record Description This record will provide photographic images taken during March to May 2014, of the very fine, coppiced alder woods which, once more widespread here, survive today only in the shelter of the steep sided stream cut ravines of Fleemis Gill and Turn Gill. These streams which drain Gammersgill Moor join and fall into the northern bank of the River Cover below the hamlet of Gammersgill. Alder woodlands, once extended across the open rough pastures between Fleemis Gill and Turn Gill and also across the spring flushed, rushy pasture to the north of Turn Gill. Alders are the dominant tree species on wet spring flushed soils over glacial boulder clays and colluvium on the lower dale sides. These Alder woods, originally much more extensive but now opened up as rough pasture were managed by coppicing and pollarding for charcoal and useful small wood, . The presence of a substantial iron bloomery site close to Turn Gill which forms the present day upper limit of Spring Wood, indicates that the alder wood was managed for charcoal for use in a local iron smelting industry.These woodlands are now largely confined to the confines of the stream-cut steep sided ravines. Whereas alders are by far the most dominant tree, especially close to the streams, downy birch trees, isolated ash trees, old hollies and rowans survive on the top edge of steep banks and on drier soils wherever the presence of glacial gravels and better drainage allows. Sallows are present, but not common anywhere. For details of the species composition of Alderwoods, see J.S. Rodwell, 1991. Editor. British Plant Communities. Volume 1: Woodlands and Scrub,102-112: W7 Alnus glutinosa- Fraxinus excelsior-Lysimachia nemorum woodland.
 Dimensions See photographs.
 Geographical area Wensleydale
 Species Alders, Ash, Hazel, Rowan, Sallow.
 Scientific Name W7 Alnus glutinosa- Fraxinus excelsior woodland
 Common / Notable Species Alders dominant, Ash Hazel, Holly and Rowan occasional, Sallows scarce. All anciebt coppice or pollards. No natural regeneration observed. Both hollies and rowans occur as mature epiphytes on the ancient alders.
 Tree and / or Stem Girth See Woodland Trust Ancient Tree Hunt website for details of individual trees.
 Additional Notes Since this record refers to streamside alder woods across a fairly large area, this Record will be in two Parts. This record , Part One of the record, will provide a photo file of images of the trees within Fleemis Gill itself and will also include the small alder wood located some 300m to the north of Fleemis Gill, SE0485 8332(centre). Part Two of this Record (see SWAAG Record 813 to follow) will provide images of the alders and other trees which are confined to the banks of Turn Gill.
 Image 1 ID 5491         Click image to enlarge
 Image 1 Description Fleemis Gill. Spring Wood. Alders with downy birch and occasional ash, hazels and rowans the stream
 Image 2 ID 5483         Click image to enlarge
 Image 2 Description The road from Gammersgill to Fleensop Farm with Fleemis Gill below.
 Image 3 ID 5484         Click image to enlarge
 Image 3 Description View down Fleemis Gill from New Close with old Scots Pine and Larch Plantation.
 Image 4 ID 5486         Click image to enlarge
 Image 4 Description Spring Wood across Fleemis Gill, from New Close
 Image 5 ID 5485         Click image to enlarge
 Image 5 Description Spring Wood across Fleemis Gill, from New Close
 Image 6 ID 5487         Click image to enlarge
 Image 6 Description View towards Coverdale from the upper edge of Spring Wood.
 Image 7 ID 5502         Click image to enlarge
 Image 7 Description Iron bloomery smelting site at Turn Gill, in pasture 300m north of Fleemis Gill the ravine of which is hidden to the right of the clump of Pine Trees.
 Image 8 ID 5503         Click image to enlarge
 Image 8 Description The iron bloomery site is visible as the bright green turf covered mound of iron slag. Alders in Turn gill visible downstream.
 Image 9 ID 5490         Click image to enlarge
 Image 9 Description Ancient birch and alder, Spring Wood
 Image 10 ID 5493         Click image to enlarge
 Image 10 Description Ash alder and downy birch in Fleemis Gill.
 Image 11 ID 5494
 Image 11 Description Old rowan with root system exposed by erosion.
 Image 12 ID 5495
 Image 12 Description Old birch coppice woodland towards the top of the Gill.
 Image 13 ID 5496
 Image 13 Description Very large birch coppice stool .
 Image 14 ID 5497
 Image 14 Description Alders by the stream.
 Image 15 ID 5498
 Image 15 Description Alders at the upper end of Spring wood, near the fir plantation.
 Image 16 ID 5499
 Image 16 Description Alder, Downy Birch with Holly epiphyte on the slope above Fleemis Gill
 Image 17 ID 5500
 Image 17 Description Alders by the stream.
 Image 18 ID 5501
 Image 18 Description Alders on the south slope.
 Image 19 ID 5513
 Image 19 Description Keeping upright on a 70 degree slope in Fleemis Gill in June. Better than the Gym and just as good for the figure.
 Image 20 ID 5504
 Image 20 Description Fleemis Gill in June
 Image 21 ID 5506
 Image 21 Description Fallen alder over loaded with very large rowan epiphyte
 Image 22 ID 5507
 Image 22 Description Detail of the parasitic rowan.
 Image 23 ID 5508
 Image 23 Description Fleemis Gill with birch, alders and hazel in June.
 Image 24 ID 5509
 Image 24 Description Birch at the top of the Gill, north side.
 Image 25 ID 5510
 Image 25 Description Discussing the trees.
 Image 26 ID 5511
 Image 26 Description Alders at SE0485 8332
 Image 27 ID 5512
 Image 27 Description Alders at SE0485 8332
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