I stopped to talk to one of the guys working there who told me that this was not hedge laying – when you partially cut through the stem of small trees almost at ground level along a hedgerow and then bend them over and interweave them with each other to create a living fence. (Sue Cane is a keen hedge layer and you might remember seeing some of her work in a Dorset post a couple of years ago.) This was ‘dead hedging’ – when you cut coppiced growth then use the thicker stems to create short supporting posts and weave the longer, willowier stems between them to create a fence.
Listen to the video and I will talk you through the process.
I was out again this morning – and so were the hedge layers…
By the time I got back this afternoon, the hedge was looking very solid and the area behind it very open. It will be interesting to watch all those coppiced trees growing up again over the next 8 years.