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Big Dreams, Small Spaces

3 Feb 2017 8:30AM

The BBC programme Big Dreams, Small Spaces will tonight (Friday 3 February 2017) showcase the work of Brickmakers Wood, a woodland on the site of the University of Suffolk.

The University leased the land to local charity Eden Rose Coppice Trust who enlisted the help of Monty Don and his team to help create a disabled access garden.

Jo Brooks from Eden Rose Coppice Trust says “It was fantastic to have the support of Monty Don and the whole Big Dreams, Small Spaces team. We are a small, local charity so this really helps to shine a light on the work we are doing. The journey from conception to completion to create a wheelchair accessible part of the woodland will be shown in the programme tonight; did we manage to achieve our dream? You’ll have to tune in to find out.”

Eden Rose Coppice Trust has been using Brickmakers Wood to support a range of people in the local community over the past two years following the success of a similar project in Sudbury.

Young people with special educational needs, those with disabilities and those receiving palliative care have all benefited from the ‘woodland oasis’ close to Alexandra Park in Ipswich. 

Justine Oakes, Environment and Sustainability Officer at the University of Suffolk says "The University’s engagement with Eden Rose Coppice Trust on the Big Dreams project has been a transformative experience for both our community and our environment. At every stage of the project, guided by Rob, Jo and Montys' vision the generosity and kindness of our Suffolk community shines through."

Jo adds “Our charity regenerates urban environmental disasters, transforming them into beautiful, natural high-biodiversity woodland settings for people with a life limiting illness, wildlife and the local community at large. Brickmakers Wood was in a particularly bad way. So far, with the help of the local community, we have thoroughly cleansed and transformed two small, secure areas, and with the help of Monty Don, have created this very special new green space.”

“We have lots of plans for Brickmakers Wood. This year we are concentrating on restoring an area that will be transformed into a traditional heritage orchard with wild flower meadow and wildlife pond. This will be used for community group orchard and ponds visits, communal fruit crop collection and wildlife training and education opportunities for vulnerable members of the community. Our mission is to have regenerated the entire 3 acre woodland within 3 years, with wildlife habitats that encourage priority and endangered local species.”

The charity is asking for the support of the community. If anyone is able to volunteer for a few hours there is a group that meets on the first Saturday of every month. For more information and to donate to the work of Eden Rose Coppice Trust visit


University of Suffolk Press Office
T: 01473 338476