We love the outdoors and in particular the forest and are extremely lucky to have the Forest Of Dean right on our doorstep to explore… so when we were asked if we would like to take part in the #LoveYourForest campaign to highlight the importance of litter free picnicking we couldn’t say no…after all this is something that weighs very heavily with the ethos of Family Days Tried & Tested.
We were shocked to learn that each year 250 tonnes of litter is removed from the forest floor…250 tonnes !!! That really is a lot of dropped rubbish in our beautiful outdoor wooded area.
So we thought we would take the opportunity to get the word out about the importance of litter free picnics by enjoying a ‘welcome to the world’ picnic to celebrate baby Jude’s arrival into the world and to make promises with the children to endeavour to always love our forests, and mountains and coastlines and any other outdoor spaces we may venture to with an active ethos that we shall always leave no trace of our presence other than our footsteps…
So with a picnic basket packed with goodies we headed to the forest…
The guardians of the forest are keeping a watchful eye over the beautiful forest, encouraging visitors not to litter and instead take their litter home…keeping our forests litter free rocks!
The Communitrees initiative can be found in the Forest of Dean from 10th August – 10th September throughout Wenchford Picnic Site. The communitrees are designed by local school children and built by local artists. There are 14 to find, so get hunting!
Why not visit yourselves and hunt them all down and discover their hidden message! It’s the most perfect family activity and sends a great message to our children. You can get involved by picking up an activity sheet from Wenchford Picnic Site or the Tourism Information Centre, Coleford.
Wenchford picnic site is an ideal side that sits in a dappled light in the heart of the forest, with a steam running through the centre it is a great place for the children to kick off their shoes (and maybe shed their clothes) and play in the shallows of the water, you could even embrace the moment yourself...with smalls falls of cascading water, stepping stones and rope swings along the river bank it really is an idyllic spot to play.
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There are so many ways which you could have a litter free picnic..
*Use reusable cutlery, plates and cups/glasses
*Pre prepare your sandwiches rather than buying them, this cuts down on packaging waste
*Transfer any food items into reusable tupperware boxes to reduce the waste packaging that may be created on your picnic, the kids will love to allocate food items into pots.
*Take a roll of bin bags in your picnic basket so if any litter is created then it’s easy to bag it up and take it home.
*How about making your own picnic trays! They can be used on any kind of picnic from forest picnics, carpet picnics or even midnight snack picnics…see how here
Whilst we set up the picnic the kids headed off to explore the forest…
Here’s a game you could try out with the kids to help give them an awareness of the longevity of litter dropped in the forest..
Set the children a challenge to see who can find the oldest dated rubbish, this doesn’t have to be a game just for picnics and is a great activity during any woodland walk, you’d be surprised just how competitive the kids will be in their search and shocked at what you may find….below is an example of what we found on a previous walk in the forest.
And you can then be proud of yourselves for your good work!!
How about trying your hand at some forest art whilst on your picnic..
All in all we had a lovely ‘welcome to the world’ picnic and know it is the first of many many more….whatever the weather or season, or location, a picnic is an ideal way to get outdoors, explore and have some family fun.
Below are some useful links to help you make the most of your exploring in the beautiful Forest of Dean…
Please take a moment to check out the #LoveYourForest vlog
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