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Families are being encouraged to enjoy a free green workout on the Forestry Commission estate at the new Town Lane community woodland in Southport, this February half term.
Experts believe that activities such as walking and cycling in clean green spaces can help people feel refreshed and energised.
With cycle routes, pathways and a mountain bike skills course, the new Town Lane community woodland, off Bentham’s Lane in Southport, is an ideal place for all the family to enjoy free outdoor exercise together in a greener, cleaner community area.
The Town Lane community woodland is part of Newlands (New Economic Environments via Woodlands) - a partnership scheme involving the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) and the Forestry Commission.
The £59 million NWDA-funded regeneration scheme is rejuvenating around 381 hectares of the Northwest’s derelict, underused and neglected land to stimulate economic growth and further opportunities for leisure and environmental improvements.
Tim Oliver from the Forestry Commission is the Newlands Project Manager. He says:
“Community woodlands are great places for people to get out and active, especially during the school holidays. They’re also a great free way to enjoy exercise in the outdoors.”
£1.78 million worth of funding has been provided for the Town Lane community woodland via Newlands.
The NWDA is providing resources to keep Town Lane maintained for the next 20 years and the Forestry Commission will manage the woodland it creates through the project for a further 79 years, making a secure period of nearly 100 years of management for the area’s green space.
A number of local delivery partners, including Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council, Mersey Basin Campaign, Environment Agency, The Mersey Forest, BTCV and Groundwork Merseyside are also involved in the project.
Over £300,000 of additional funding has been secured from European Union Objective One Programme via The Mersey Forest Trust.
Town Lane is one of seven Newlands projects being developed in the Mersey Belt area of Northwest England.
Further information about Town Lane and other 'Newlands' projects is available at www.forestry.gov.uk/newlands and www.newlandsproject.co.uk
More information about other Forestry Commission woodlands around North West England can be found at www.forestry.gov.uk/northwestengland
NOTES TO EDITOR
1. Images of the Town Lane community woodland are available by calling 01524-782086.
2. The capital investment from Newlands (including long-term management funding) for the Town Lane community woodland is £1.78million from the NWDA.
3. A brownfield site is any land or premises that has previously been used and is not currently fully in use, although it may be partially occupied or utilised. It may also be vacant, derelict or contaminated. A brownfield site is not necessarily available for immediate use without intervention.
4.. Community Woodlands are multi-purpose open spaces that can be easily accessed by the local community, and can include a series of small woodlands, footpaths, cycle and bridleways, football pitches, wetland habitats and a wildflower meadow. Each site is designed in partnership with the local community to help improve and enhance the economic, environmental and social value of the local neighbourhood to work towards a sustainable environment for everyone.
5.. Woodland cover across the North West of England currently stands at just 6.5% compared with the national average of 8% and a European average of 33%.
6.. The Forestry Commission is the largest provider of countryside recreation in Britain, with responsibility for more than one million hectares (2.4 million acres) of forest, woodlands and open countryside. Its Northwest England Forest District covers the Lake District in Cumbria, the Forest of Bowland in Lancashire, Merseyside, Greater Manchester and Cheshire. The forests are managed for conservation, wildlife, landscape and recreation as well as providing a valuable source of timber.
Paul Gardner or Jon Perkins at Osprey Communications on 01524-782086.
Tim Oliver (Newlands Programme Manager), tel. 01524 565806 or 07771 806964 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org