The changeable month of April means you can practically experience all the weathers available in the UK during a single visit to Epping Forest.

However, it is very hard to beat the beauty of raindrops drying out on a bright spring flower following an April shower as the sun re-emerges from the heavy, grey clouds. So heading out into London’s Great Forest despite the chance of a sudden downpour is still very much recommended, with the correct clothing or an umbrella, of course.

You’ll be highly rewarded for your visit just now, as the stunning bluebells return once again to carpet the woodland floor in their unique shade of blue and accompanying seasonal perfume.

As the month draws to a close the aroma of garlic may fill the spring air in areas where the wild garlic, or ramsons, grow. Whilst we appreciate that in recent years taking photographs amongst bluebells and activities such as foraging are increasing in popularity, we ask you to help us to take care of Epping Forest, which is an ancient woodland, with much of it protected as a Site of Special Scientific Interest and a Special Area of Conservation. Please do not pick flowers or step onto flowers – it is possible to photograph the beautiful springtime spectacle whilst still being careful not to trample any of the delicate blossoms and damage the plants. Please help us to conserve all that is special about this much-loved Forest so we can ensure these important species continue to thrive for all to enjoy and for wildlife to benefit from.

If you are visiting the south of the Forest by bike, you may be pleased to know that, thanks to recent funding from Transport for London, there have recently been 73 cycle stands installed in 32 of the most popular visitor destinations in Epping Forest. We hope this may encourage more people to visit by bike. Please check our website to view the locations.

With the arrival of the warmer weather, Epping Forest’s longhorn cows will be out and about doing their very important work of grazing the woodland, helping us to improve biodiversity and continuing this historic tradition of habitat management.

And finally, as we approach HRH The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations we are delighted to be able to share with you news of two recent visits with royal association. The first Queen’s Green Canopy tree planting took place at Gifford’s Wood on March 19, with the planting of a field maple. Throughout the year there will be further exciting news about how Epping Forest will commemorate this momentous Platinum Jubilee year. We were also honoured with a visit by HRH the Duke of Gloucester to Wanstead Park on April 6. The Duke, who is the official Ranger of Epping Forest, visited to see the repair work taking place at the Grotto in Wanstead Park, thanks to funding from the City of London Corporation and the Heritage of London Trust. Stabilising works are currently taking place as part of the first phase of a wider project to protect this important and unique heritage feature within the historic Wanstead Park site, which was acquired by the City of London Corporation in 1882. We are looking forward to updating more about this as the project develops.

Graeme Doshi-Smith is the chairman of the City of London Corporation Epping Forest and Commons Committee