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Woodland flowers in Foxley Wood thanks to National Forest Company grant

Friday, 26th June 2015

The Woodland Trust has made improvements to Foxley Wood, one of its key woodlands in The National Forest, close to the village of Linton, in South Derbyshire. Trees have been thinned and undergrowth removed, and local users of the wood are already benefiting from the work which was carried out with assistance from the National Forest Company (NFC).

Foxley Wood was originally planted by the Woodland Trust in 1995 and 1996 and is now approaching 20 years old. The trees have grown well and the paths were starting to become narrower due to prolific growth of shrubs such as blackthorn. Thanks to a Woodland Management Grant from the NFC, the Woodland Trust has been able to cut back the paths and thin out the edges of the woodland, encouraging the proliferation of woodland flowers and enhancing the views along the rides (paths) and in amongst the trees. Local people are already enjoying a more open woodland which will continue to develop and deliver wildlife benefits for many years to come. In addition, the remaining trees will continue to take up carbon, provide shade and shelter, absorb water through their roots, clean the air we breathe and potentially support local jobs and businesses.

Chris Williams, site manager for the Woodland Trust said: 'Foxley Wood is a wonderful piece of woodland, enjoyed and cherished by many local residents. Work carried out as a result of National Forest Company funding will mean this wood will be even more accessible and inviting, and I look forward to seeing more people explore the wood over the coming summer months.'

Charles Robinson, NFC Woodland Management Officer said: 'Foxley Wood is typical of the 7000ha of new woodlands created in the Forest since the early 1990s – getting a bit teenager-ish and a bit unkempt. Opening up the trees and clearing the paths helps the trees to grow stronger, encourages wild flowers to flourish, and makes the woodland a more attractive place to walk and explore. We were delighted to work with the Woodland Trust and fund the work through our Woodland Management Grant which is specifically designed to benefit woodlands due for management and to help kickstart a local woodland economy.'

Local resident Justin de Vere, of Main Street, Linton, said: 'We moved to the area when Foxley Wood was at an early stage and have seen the wood grow and mature. Like anything, the wood needs maintaining and the recent thinning project has enhanced our joy of the wood not only for our generation but also that of our children.'

Emma Davies, of Linton Heath added: 'Since the management works have been done it is much easier and nicer to walk around Foxley Wood - it’s lighter and feels much more open. The woods are used more now and it would be great if this was maintained.'

For more information on the work of the National Forest Company in creating and managing woodlands and grant funding that may be available for local landowners and communities visit http://www.nationalforest.org/woodlands/