Good Woods advisor, Paul Orsi (Sylva Foundation) visited the National Trust owned Ashdown Estate this week to discuss the future management of woodlands that surround the 17th Century Ashdown House. Paul was invited by Richard Jackson, who manages the estate, and Andy Foley the resident Ranger.
The woodlands at Ashdown estate are a very prominent feature in the landscape, being surrounded by downland at the top of the Ridgeway. They form part of the historic landscape around the house, the central feature being a large avenue leading directly from the woodland giving views to the Ridgeway and beyond.
Richard was keen to receive advice from Paul about restoring the hazel coppice back into a working cycle to produce woodland products and improve habitat structure. He was also interested in how to most sensitively convert an area of conifer woodland back into native broadleaves.
Paul suggested that a detailed management plan should be written for the woodland and that there would be a grants available from the Forestry Commission for this. As well as giving clarity to the vision for the woodland the management plan would provide maximum flexibility for woodland operations by providing felling permissions for 10 years.
The Good Woods project is a novel project aiming to breathe new life into UK woodlands. The project—a joint initiative between DIY giant B&Q, sustainability charity BioRegional and forestry charity The Sylva Foundation—will revive woodlands to provide environmental, social and economic benefits. For more information contact Amy Hammond: firstname.lastname@example.org