The bluebells may almost be over, but the woods of Hertfordshire will be lovely for ever.

A woodland walk, specially when the bluebells are spinning their purple magic under the shade, can make the heart sing, drive away depression, add to the sum of our health, and for those of us of a religious nature, make us burst out in praise of the creator who gave us such largesse.

Walking through Heartwood Forest in the recent summery weather, I reflected on the great good fortune of people living in the vicinity of Sandridge. In the course of a mere ten years, Heartwood has burgeoned from disconnected copses into a wonderful, heart-stopping forest space, a treasure for everyone and for ever.  But this is the result of masses of hard work from volunteers and charity.  It doesn’t happen by itself.

The creator God may have given us a world of beauty and wonder, but it’s up to us to keep it beautiful and enhance it. Not everyone has time or capacity to volunteer for the Woodland Trust, but everyone can support them in some way, even it’s just by walking in the woods or spreading the word. And everyone has the capacity for joy and can take pleasure in nature’s beauty, even a plant on your windowsill. We are made that way – and isn’t it amazing? As the writer of the Psalms said, in the old translation of the Bible,  “We are fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works.”

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