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Bowers Gifford and North Benfleet Residents' Association

Charity Ref EW38482

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The Page Wood Trust

Charity Reference 1168506

woodland
 

Page Woods

We are delighted to let you know that Page Woods came into our possession on 16th October 2017.

We would like to thank everyone who helped us raise the funds required, in both big and small ways. Particular thanks are extended to:

Essex County Council for £20k

Basildon, Billericay and Wickford Council for Voluntary Services £673

St Margaret's C of E Academy's sponsored walk £900

We received numerous individual donations too, without which we would not have achieved our target, and of course, not forgetting all the fundraising activities and events. A very special thank you to you all.

Now that the woods are in the ownership of the community we need to get on with the task of setting out a management plan.  Experts who have viewed the site believe that little coppicing and re-planting is necessary. As there is a Tree Protection Order (TPO) over every tree, any coppicing would have to have Basildon Council’s approval.

First of all we would like the views of local people. We haven’t supplied a form as this could  limit or even lead suggestions. So, to give you some ideas of the mix of ideas received so far there has been a suggestion of fencing around the wood to protect it; another suggestion of hedging (which may still be provided free of charge by the Woodland Trust); development of a hedgehog habitat; paths to be reinforced eg bark or chippings on paths; a bridge over the bomb hole; a kissing gate to prevent bicycles and motor vehicles getting into the woods - conversely a wider gate to provide disabled access; a dog waste bin – conversely a view that there should be no waste bin and that such waste is composted naturally back into the soil; a gruffalo carved on one of the trees.

Please send us your ideas/views either by email to newsletter@bowersgifford.org.uk or write a note and drop it in at 31A Westlake Avenue or 139 Pound Lane. Priority will obviously be given to the views of those people living around the woods.  Jon Horwood is putting in an application to Ford’s Dunton Charity Committee for 30 staff to work on this community project for one day.  Local views would contribute to his application.

Recent plans provided by the developer wishing to build on North Benfleet Hall Farm showed a walk way through Page Woods. We wish to make it clear that the plan was not discussed with us and we have since made it clear to the developer that we would not approve a public path through the Woods because of the harm it might do to endangered species which occupy the site – the developers have accepted our objection.

However we will continue with our guided history/nature tours (about 10 per year) to groups like U3A or W.I.; Leaf identification projects or similar nature projects for St. Margaret’s School and cubs. These projects were identified as part of our grant applications.  Some concerns have been raised over these visits and the damage which might be done – however, we are absolutely certain that no damage has been done by these groups. Parking is a problem and now that the woods are purchased we hope to make satisfactory arrangements.

 

barkleaf

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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