RESIDENTS REPORTED WOODS WERE ANCIENT
ROBERT YOUNG Denham Green Lane Denham
I READ your article regarding Newstead Wood with considerable interest.
It is unworthy of South Bucks District Council to suggest that at the time of granting outline planning permission in June, the evidence available suggested Newstead was not an ancient woodland.
Local residents informed the council many times that they believed Newstead was an ancient woodland and were conducting historical research to prove the point.
The council, however, dismissed the possibility with erroneous reasoning, i.e. that a wood which had been felled in its history cannot be an ancient woodland.
Residents did inform council that their reasoning was invalid and provided them with Natural England definitions of ancient woodland.
At the June planning meeting, local resident John Hollands clearly informed the committee of the above facts but his comments were ignored.
Furthermore, a request from residents to have the woodland botanically surveyed as an alternative method of establishing the ancientness of the wood, was denied.
The perception of residents is that SBDC did not want Newstead Wood to be designated as an ancient woodland under any circumstances.