Julie Barrett Murray loves the 81 acres of forest, field, and stream that has been in her family since 1948. She grew up exploring the woods and cherishes the memories of her family and her rural New Hampshire upbringing. When a neighboring property was slated for development, it spurred her to take action. Working with UVLT, she and her husband, Jim, made sure this could not happen to “The Barrett Place.”
The conservation values of The Barrett Place are numerous. Split by Kenyon Road into two main tracts, the property’s height of land starts in the south and then slopes down to the north before leveling out at Kenyon Road and then continues again to slope downhill to Stage Road. The most visible part of the property is an approximately 7 acre corn field at a bend in Stage Road, which is a main travel artery from Meriden Village to Plainfield Village. The field is farmed by McNamara Dairy in support of their glass-bottled milk operation. There are a few pockets of statewide important and prime agricultural soils, although, approximately 89% of the property is forested. The property is in Current Use and is undergoing an update to the Forest Management Plan. Of those forested acres, about 1/3 is listed as either supporting habitat or the highest ranked habitat in the region on the 2015 Wildlife Action Plan. Several deer sheds, which can be rare to see, were found during a site visit with the Plainfield Conservation Commission, which supported the Murray’s donation by providing funds for project costs and stewardship.
The conservation of this property will aid in protecting a unique section of Plainfield. It is the pinnacle of Julie’s thought that nature deserves a quiet place to just be. It is a lasting legacy to Julie’s deceased parents, especially her mother, who only just recently passed away.