Hey – what can I say! Thanks once more for your efforts on this 5th work day on Devonport Leat to: Barry & Tanya, Bill, Bob, Chris, Elaine & John, Janet, John & Rachel, Keith B, Mally, Sylvia and Will. Fifteen of us made the effort to wake up and be at Clearbrook car park for 10 am.

After reading the runes and casting the bones, the weather was kind again – it was dull but there was nothing wet. I hope I can keep up this record, it’s so much nicer when we stay dry – although there was wet stuff running from under my hard hat and down onto my face. The chances of always having a dry day are growing increasingly slim – but I travel in hope! If I just keep doing what I do …..

Derek and Val were with us briefly before disappearing on other DPA work – Derek came to deliver the DPA tools and Val came to deliver the cake – so that was alright! ………………………….. Yes, James, more cake!

I received favourable comments on the ’breaks’ regimen – start with coffee when we arrive at the work site, coffee at 11, lunch at 12, coffee at 2, finish at 3 pm, adjourn to a watering hole about 3.30 – it seems to work well and keeps people going, or do I mean, coming? It certainly results in a lot of work being done.

We had a visit from the Secretary of Roborough Commoners Association who said he wanted to comment on four points and I thought “Oh, no!” what have I done? He then listed (1) the number of workers, (2) their effort, (3) the amount of work done and (4) the quality of the work – all in our favour! So, that was alright, too.

Sometimes when you cut a hawthorn limb, it just doesn't come down!

We started at the same place as the last visit because there were some trees that were left that we had decided needed to be removed, leaving a few to grow on. The efforts then went on extending the ‘patch’ we were working on, towards Yelverton. Barry and Tanya went on before us and used the brush-cutter to clear a long way ahead. This means that we won’t need to use that machine for quite a while. Thanks, guys!

Clearing scrub trees from the leat - mostly multi-stemmed from being cut previously

To show how ‘ornery’ some hawthorn trees can be, there was one with a well-developed canopy or ‘head’. I cut four major upright limbs without anything falling or being persuaded to fall, the limbs were all intertwined up above. It was only when the final, fifth, limb was cut that the whole tree came down.

All I can end with, again, is my thanks for turning up on the job and for making the work so enjoyable. Thanks, guys, you are stars!

See you next Tuesday, 18th? Same place, same time.