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Pewit Plantation

 

Sustainable Wantage take on Pewit Plantation

Sustainable Wantage have taken a lease on a small piece of woodland on the Ridgeway owned by the Woodland Trust. It is 1 hectare in size and until a gale flattened it in the late 1990s it had a stand of mature beech trees. At around the turn of the millennium it was replanted with a mixture of native hardwoods. The Woodland Trust have been seeking for some time to place this small wood under the management of a group who which is prepared to manage it according to their the Trust’s principles – only use native species, retain public access, manage without artificial herbicides and pesticides and keep the name Pewit (a one once-common farmland bird).

 Sustainable Wantage hope to use the wood for education (eg under the Forest Schools Initiative), to allow local people to enjoy and appreciate nature, practise rural crafts and harvest timber and sustainable wood fuel for local use. Bringing undermanaged woodlands into better management improves biodiversity and allows the trees to grow more quickly, soaking up more CO2 from the atmosphere. Use of wood as a fuel rather than gas or oil reduces the emission of carbon into the atmosphere from sources that would otherwise remain fossilised in the ground. Sustainable Wantage regard man-made climate change as an important issue that our generation should do all they can to mitigate. With this in mind, they hope that one of the products from the woodland will be well seasoned logs for use in local log boilers.

 

Damian Culshaw – woodland manager for Sustainable Wantage - said ‘We are excited to be able to take on this challenging project and look forward to working with interested members of the local Community to bring the woodland into good management. We are taking advice through the B&Q funded Goodwoods project and expect that the main task over the next few years will be to thin out the now overcrowded ‘millennium’ trees. If anyone is interested in our ‘logs for labour’ initiative or just getting some exercise in a lovely Ridgeway setting then join us on our working party days.

If you are interested in being involved then please get in touch with Damian Culshaw email culshawdf@virginmedia.com or call 01235 766689  

 


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