Planning Green Bridges Action: The Sarn Oaks

The first plans were considered in 2017 with the aim of featuring the surviving oak trees in the area of Bachaethlon Township.

These are probably remnants of the ancient woodland that existed in Dyffryn Ceri.

7 bck oak

8 bck oak

9 bck oak

During November 2019 an outline map for a potential route, known as the Sarn Oaks, was created in two formats

Sarn inner Ggle Oaks

Sarn inner OS OAKS

The route contains many landscape features that are being photographed to become part of the background material to be published with the route.

Detailed examination of the fields covered by the ‘aethlon’ part of the word bachaethlon (above) has revealed the process by which (probably in the late18th/early C19th) the land was turned into intensive production (‘industrialised’). Old drainage systems are fracturing. These, by chance, have appeared on  satellite imagery (May 2008): a grid system presumably constructed using a mole plough.

Cyfenni drainage

A basic question for a project that presumes to attempt the considerable issue of re-establishing an appropriate relationship “between people, places, communities & the natural environment” is:

Where, in the European localities in which the partners inhabit, is there anything such as ‘The “Natural” Environment’?

There is an implication that ‘natural’ implies something which has not been ‘interfered with’ (by humanity).

Given the present (2020) concerns about the degradation of Global Systems as a result of human activity and interference, having a ‘working understanding’ of the term ‘natural environment’, is important for a project such as “Green Bridges’.

“Life is a self-renewing process through action upon the environment.”
(John Dewey. “Democracy and Education: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Education”)

This situation becomes complex when one species is able to ‘self-renew’ at the expense of the environments in which it exists. Is it possible to develop a situation in which all ‘life-forms’ are allowed to continue their processes of ‘self-renewing’? This may now be the requirement of the ‘education towards democracy’ that Dewey proposed over 100 years ago.

International Workshop
March 16th – 21st
Bishop’s Castle, Sarn & Oxford

The Sarn Oaks route will be explored by partners, focusing on:
potential for such routes to allow creative activities that develop greater

  • knowledge
  • sensitivity
  • understanding
    of the natural environment

…….involving a  focus on the value of ‘the other’ (‘the natural environment’) not just viewing ‘the environment’ (and its constituent parts) as a resource for human ‘improvement’.

The process will include:

Visiting the oaks and observing

  • their position in the landscape,
  • present age & condition
  • relationship to land use around them

Engaging in a variety of creative activities to help

  • explore the participants thoughts and feelings regarding their visit
  • share views and opinions relating to the oaks & their present context

The reactions to & results from the action will be its own evaluation of the initial activities intended to assist the “valuing of ‘the other’ “

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