Treasure Trove Found in Dunwich
Treasure was indeed found on Sunday 13 August, when the cyclists competing in the World Land Trust's Dunwich Forest Cycle Treasure Hunt scoured the countryside for answers to the cryptic clues. Competitors of all ages set out on the slightly damp but warm Sunday morning across the English Nature reserve, following the coded directions and clues that would win them a piece of treasure. Cycling through dripping dense native woodland you could begin to imagine what it would be like to experience the tropical rainforests in Ecuador which the World Land Trust are currently working hard to save.
Tropical forest loss and the burning of scrub is thought to be a major contributor to global warming. Tropical forests are being reduced in size at a rate of 50 acres a minute, thereby lessening the ability of the earth to produce oxygen and absorb the huge volumes of carbon dioxide we discharge from industrial processes. As well as their ability to lock up carbon tropical forests are also the treasure trove of the natural world, covering less than 6 per cent of the earth's surface and yet home to about 60 per cent of the world's plant and animal species.
The World Land Trust has, since it was established in 1989, helped protect over 300,000 acres of critically threatened land including tropical forests in Ecuador, Belize and the Philippines, arid coastal steppe in Patagonia and vital elephant habitat in N E India.
Meanwhile we greatly enjoyed the wildlife and wilderness of Dunwich Forest with fleeting glimpses of Muntjac and Red Deer as well as harriers and goldcrests and to add to the wonderful natural life we also had some stunning wood carvings on display, provided by local wood sculptor, Ben Loughrill.
Thank you to Colin at the Harbour Inn, Southwold who very kindly donated refreshments for the competitors to enjoy at the end! Also to Walberswick Cycle Hire for offering a 25% discount to all treasure hunt entrants! Congratulations to Mr & Mrs Wilson of Wivenhoe, Essex who won the hamper, the Southwold Lions who won a pack of centenary Thatcher's Cider and the Ballantyne Family from Walberswick who won the cycling accessories.
Thanks to Huggies Cycle Shop, Focus Organics and Thatcher's Cider (Somerset)for donating the prizes, and thanks to everyone who toook part and helped make this day a success.