The woodland predominantly comprises a mix of broadleaved species including oak, sweet chestnut and sycamore. The sweet chestnut areas includes areas of recently coppiced sweet chestnut, young growing chestnut (c.10 years old), and chestnut grown as part of a broadleaved mixture. There are areas within the wood are classified as an Ancient and Semi Natural Woodland (ASNW). The ASNW designation indicate that the wood has had continuous tree cover since at least 1600 and is of high environmental value.
The area c.1.5hectares) of coppicing adjacent to the attractive Lampen Stream, a steeply incised stream on the western boundary of the wood, is most recent. The chestnut coppice regrowth is widespread, vigorous and exceeds 1m in height. This indicates that whilst there may be deer in the area, the population is not sufficient to cause significant damage to the chestnut crop. Within the chestnut areas in the other wooded compartments there are some attractive small dimension (<30cm Diameter at Breast height, DBH) oak stems, being straight and clean of defects. The non-chestnut broadleaved species, such as oak, ash, sycamore and birch, are predominantly young in age, with the exception of some roadside oak. The oldest oak (some >60cm DBH) are found within the south west corner of the wood. An avenue of Corsican and Scots pine provides a contrasting feel to the northern end of the wood. The open ground has some natural regeneration of mixed broadleaves. Circular grassed paths pass through the top of this area, leading to and through areas of young planted mixed broadleaves.
The best views are from the high point in the open ground, being of the immediate woodlands and the open arable fields to the north west. The range of the tree species and their ages gives the woodland considerable biodiversity appeal and contrasting aesthetics. The intimate mix of open grassland, recent coppice and standing coppice/mature trees attracts a wide range of wildlife.
The woodland has a secure surfaced area suitable for timber stacking and immediate access to Swanton Lane which leads to the A257. The adjoining landowner has shared access over the route marked as blue, with maintenance proportionate to use.
There is a Countryside Stewardship agreement – WD2 – “Woodland Improvement” that expires in 2023. WD2 scheme to 2028 has been made. A new owner can decide whether to succeed to a new agreement (and receive payments, albeit they will not be apportioned) or not, should the application be successful.
Read our Interim Forest Market Review 2023 which offers new insight into the changing dynamics of the commercial forestry market.