25 APRIL 2012NEWS RELEASE No: 15432
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Forestry Commission Scotland has acquired Bluebell and Rannoch Woods from Renfrewshire Council in a move that will see the woodlands turned into thriving hubs of greenery and wildlife.
The Commission has recently completed a new 1195m path network at Windyhill and is now turning its attention to the 36 hectares of land these woods cover.
Over the next few years, both forests will be thinned to allow for more open space, benches will be repaired and replaced, rhododendron bushes and dangerous trees will be removed and welcome entrances to the woods will be redesigned.
By improving accessibility to the sites, the Commission hopes to encourage more people to escape to the outdoors and take advantage of the mature woodland, as well as wider greenspaces.
Matt Buckland, Site Manager at Forestry Commission Scotland said: “The team is really looking forward to working with the local community to ensure the woods are safe and welcoming.
“There is a lot of hard graft ahead of us but I am confident we can make a real difference to this wonderful woodland.
“If people have any ideas on what they would like to see in Bluebell and Rannoch woods it would be great to hear from them.”
School children from Auchenlodment Primary School have rolled up their sleeves and helped clean up the area as part of National Spring Clean month.
In preparation for a busy summer ahead of visitors and walkers to the forests, the pupils ventured out into the woodlands armed with pincers and bin bags and picked up litter and debris from paths and hedgerow.
Derek Shannan, Community Ranger at Forestry Commission Scotland said: “This is the third year pupils from Auchenlodment Primary School have taken part in this hugely important campaign.
“Not only are they helping reduce the amount of litter in the forests but they are also learning about the importance of protecting the environment.
“The children all had a fantastic time exploring their local surroundings and the woods are already looking much better thanks to their hard work.”
A guided walk will take place today, Thursday 26th April, giving visitors a chance to discover the woods and learn more about the acquisition. Anyone wishing to take part should meet at the old Bird in Hand Hotel, Beith Road at 10.30am. The walk is free and more information is available by calling Derek Shannan on 07798827978 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to news editors
1. Forestry Commission Scotland is part of the Scottish Government's Environment & Forestry Directorate. For more info www.forestry.gov.uk/scotland.
2. Media enquiries to Steve Williams, Forestry Commission Scotland press office 0131 314 6508.