Upgrade of the visitor facilities at Wendover Woods 2010 - 2015
Name of policy, function or service.
Upgrade of the visitor facilities at Wendover Woods - This project document is Wendover Woods longer-term strategy for delivery of the site and its activities through to 2015.
Purpose and aims of the policy, function or service.
This project is designed to ensure that visitor facilities within Wendover Woods do not deteriorate further and adversely affect the reputation of the Forestry Commission by:
- Providing new visitor buildings at Wendover Woods.
- Providing new car parking.
- Providing a new play facility.
- Enabling the use of sustainable fuels and water bore-hole to supply the new facilities.
Who will benefit mainly from this policy, function or service?
The beneficiaries of the work of Wendover Woods are many and varied. We work in partnership with a large number of organisations and bodies from regional and sub regional levels, right down to very local communities.
The key stakeholders for each area of our work:
Recreation – the general public, target groups (youth, women, elderly, etc), activity clubs, national organisations.
Land management – land owners, estate managers;
Education – schools, teachers, youth groups, colleges;
Environment – conservation NGO’s such as Chilterns Society, Wildlife Trust; Local Authorities; Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), English Heritage
Social engagement – Primary Care Trusts, representative bodies, local authority social services; local community groups and pro-active organisations.
These stakeholders represent and cover contractors and neighbours through to local communities within the immediate catchment area, which covers the counties of Buckinghamshire, Bedfordshire, Oxon and Hertfordshire along with some of the Northwestern London Boroughs.
Information and Data (evidence) used.
Summary of Consultation
Consultation for the Wendover Project, via the Chilterns Forest Design Plan (FDP) began in March 2004. The Chilterns FDP was approved in March 2007 and consultation began concentrating on the future of the Wendover Project.
March 2004 - 1st Phase - Steering group formed to guide the production of the plan and provide a conduit for the public to feedback
April 2004 – May 2005 - Steering group helped to shape a draft FDP, incorporating action points and looking at potential for development in Wendover. Initial aims circulated to public via ‘Chalk & Trees’, the publication of the Chilterns AONB.
November 2005 – January 2006 - 2nd Phase - Public consultation begins in earnest with Neighbours, permit holders, Parish Councils, Local interest and Wildlife groups. Posters displayed in all woods, website information available, Cd’s distributed to libraries, adverts through various media.
January 2006 - Consultation review – summary of findings. The draft aims and objectives were adopted without change.
February 2006 – February 2007 - Development of the revised Chilterns FDP.
January 2007 - Initial stakeholder analysis and involvement for the Wendover Project.
February 2007 - Presentation of revised Chilterns FDP. Discussion with steering group.
March 2007 – April 2007 - Minor alterations were made and submission to public register on 5th March and subsequent approval given.
Open day in Wendover Woods. Questionnaires available. Proposals on display boards.
August 2007 - Proposals altered to reflect feedback to date. Consultation day, more questionnaires, display boards. Wider audience targetted. Key stakeholders engaged.
January 2008 – March 2008 - Consultation with minority and special interest groups, partnership with Chilterns Society develops Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), Detailed consultation with schools and nursery’s. Media involved. RAF involvement. Liaison with strategic local individuals ongoing. Open invitation to all to view plans in the Forest Classroom for those not yet involved.
On-going - Continued liaison with key stakeholders (Bucks CC, AVDC) and partnership working with Chilterns Society.
Summary of findings
The key findings from the development of the Chilterns Forest Design Plan with respect to the Project were to continue to provide access and to a wide range of groups and activities. Overall, visitors and stakeholders are happy with the current site management and didn’t feel that proposals compelled them to become involved. Increasing a sense of ownership and involvement will be a target of the project.
The most important finding from each step of the Wendover Woods Project consultation was a great level of support for the proposals. Also, site improvements such as bigger and better toilets, a more inclusive and exciting play area, better traffic flow and increased car parking were most important to people. Existing facilities also generated significant positive comment such as the café (and notably its staff), barbecue stands and the current children’s play area.
The main reasons for visits to the woods were access to open green space, peace and tranquillity, the Children’s play area and walking in general (both with or without dog(s))
Summary of Impact.
The impact of the project document will be neutral or positive.
Monitoring or Evaluation.
Delivery of the project will be reviewed and amended as required from a financial perspective on an annual basis. Monthly project reports will be submitted to the Forest Enterprise Management Board.
Feedback from relevant groups will be collected during the year covering the various projects that have taken place in Wendover Woods.
This feedback will be used to inform and refine the decision making process of future business plans in regular team discussions and sharing of good practice.