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World Habitat is inviting local people to the public opening of the Peter Elderfield Memorial Wood in Whitwick, Leicestershire, UK on Monday 29 April.

In addition to being a space for the public to use, the 27-acre wood will act as a Forest School – a space for children to learn and play in nature. We hope it will be a place for all local people of all ages to enjoy.

Planted in 2000, the wood is dedicated to Peter Elderfield – the founder of World Habitat. He set up East Midlands Housing Association in 1946 after returning from the Second World War, and the Building and Social Housing Foundation in 1976 – which went on to become World Habitat in 2017.

David Ireland, Chief Executive of World Habitat, said:

“The Open Day is an opportunity for people from the community to come along and find out more about the Wood. While it has been used and cared for by some of the local community, we would like many more people to make use of this beautiful natural site.

“We’ve recently introduced a new management plan and various improvements have been undertaken, including repairing and rebuilding a dry-stone wall bordering the site; clearing the rides to create better pathways and thinning and coppicing to enhance the biodiversity of the wood.

“We believe that housing should be a basic right for everyone, as part of a vibrant community – and this includes access to green spaces, so we are delighted to be able to re-introduce people to the Peter Elderfield Memorial Wood.”

The event will start at the Loughborough Road entrance (opposite Swannymote Road) with a welcome speech by David Ireland at 13:00 and the unveiling of a bench dedicated to Peter Elderfield.  This will be followed by activities including planting fruit trees and willow weaving.

A complimentary afternoon-tea will be available. Toilet facilities and picnic benches are also provided.

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