Whitefield Nature Reserve

Blog post, April 4 2017

The White Field in Butleigh used to belong to Patrick Whitefield, in fact he took his name from it. Some years ago he gave it to the Somerset Wildlife Trust and became its first warden. Since his death they have taken over the day-to-day management of the field, one of Britain’s few remaining traditional wildflower meadows.

I have been visiting every summer, though last year I got there late and it had been cut for hay before I saw the wild flowers and orchids. This year I went this weekend, Easter Monday, and it is a carpet of cowslips. Later in the summer it will turn purple with a new wave of flowers. Then it will give a crop of dense, herb-rich hay.

Sitting in the little patch of woodland, that Patrick plan ted himself all those years ago, I have the feeling of being enveloped in the magic of nature left to its own devices. Patrick has bequeathed to us something very special.

​I think I might start visiting several times a year …