Community woodland moves a step closer

Plans to create a new woodland between Chesterton and Kingsmere, in southwest Bicester, are starting to take shape. Cherwell District Council is working closely with Bicester Town Council, Chesterton Parish Council, Oxfordshire County Council and local representatives to develop and manage the project.

Published: Thursday, 7th March 2019

Local resident and community lead on the project, Professor David Jones said: “It will be wonderful for local people to have access to various forms of recreational activity in and around the woodland, which is currently not available to them. Community woods are inspiring places, alive with nature and loved by people, both those who look after them and those who visit for pleasure.”

The woodland has been named ‘Burnehyll’, which is a derivative of the Old English for a ‘hill above a stream’, the stream being the Gagle Brook. It will be made up of 108 acres of arable land to be acquired by the council from the developer of Kingsmere, Countryside Properties (Bicester) Ltd., Cllr Ian Corkin, lead member for customers and transformation and district and county councillor for Chesterton, said: “I am very excited by this new initiative, a great community project on people’s doorsteps. Looking after the natural beauty surrounding our towns is something we should all play our part in.”

Cllr Barry Wood, leader of the council said: ‘Working together will enable us to deliver a fantastic new green space for local people. I am looking forward to progressing the plans for the area over the coming months.”

The land will be transferred in the autumn from Countryside Properties Ltd and it is hoped that planting will start soon afterward with help from the local community.