The April walk will be on 24th and we will go to Swell Wood, near Langport, to see the heronry. This is further afield than we usually go so we will meet in the village car park (free) at Langport at 11 30 a.m. It will take about an hour to get there. We can go to the Art Tea Zen cafe for refreshments before driving on another 4 miles to Swell Wood. It’s a small area with short woodland walks and we are hoping that the spring flowers will still be flowering and that the bluebells will be in flower. There is a new observation hide near the heronry which wasn’t open to the public when we went to check the venue. It was thought that the herons would get used to the new building more quickly if people weren’t wandering about. The plan was for the area to be opened up towards the end of March. The heron’s nest is a spectacular mound of twig and larger branches of wood perched fairly high in the trees. Amazing! We can stay as long as we choose and then go home, independently, when we are ready.
The post code for Langport is TA10 9PW if you want to use your SATNAV. Otherwise, drive to Bridgwater to the traffic lights past the Crossed Rifle pub roundabout (Sainsburys is on the right) and turn left into St John’s Street. Follow the street round to the right (straight on is the station.) and follow signs to Langport or Weston Zoyland on the A372 (about 10 miles.) At a T junction by a large Esso garage and petrol station turn Right, signed Huish Episcopi A378. Langport village car park is on the left at the bottom of the hill by a pedestrian crossing.
A little information. After you have passed Weston Zoyland you will drive through the middle of what was once a large wartime aerodrome. It was opened as an R.A.F. airfield in about 1926. During the war it was used by the USAAF and enlarged. Most of the land has been returned to farming but there are still stretches of runways and perimeter tracks visible as well as a few brick airfield buildings, including the control tower. By 1958 no aircraft were stationed there. During the war, as the station expanded the A378 was diverted and then after the war was restored to it original location using a considerable length of the main runway. Microlights use the NW half of the 16/34 runway and is a base for Skywatch Civil Air Patrol.