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New Diss woodland site is revealed

PUBLISHED: 14:16 24 April 2008 | UPDATED: 10:28 12 July 2010

The site for the first Diss Community Woodland has just been announced, with a public exhibition planned in May.

A steering group, headed by local farmer Dick Mitchell, has arranged to buy five acres of meadow off Factory Lane from The Diss Quaker Trust.

The site for the first Diss Community Woodland has just been announced, with a public exhibition planned in May.

A steering group, headed by local farmer Dick Mitchell, has arranged to buy five acres of meadow off Factory Lane from The Diss Quaker Trust. The land has been farmed for many years by Dick Seaman of neighbouring Roydon, who is retiring in September, and it is hoped that the first young trees will be planted next winter.

It follows a two-year long search for a suitable site by the steering group, which was formed in 2006 under the umbrella of the Green Light Trust which has successfully nurtured more than 30 community wild spaces in the Eastern Counties.

The Diss project has strong links with the town's junior school where pupils have been growing trees from seed for the last two seasons. It is also hoped to involve other sections of the community, and individuals, in developing or utilising woodland skills so that the area can been enjoyed by everyone.

The money for the land purchase was secured from funds set aside for recreational purposes by a local house builder. However, more money will be needed for planting, clearing and developing the woodland in coming years.

The fundraising campaign is headed by nature writer and author, Richard Mabey who has a passion for trees. He said: “The earth desperately needs more woodland, to protect its diversity of life forms and to help soak up carbon emissions.”

People are invited to have their say on how the site should eventually look at the exhibition at The Stables Gallery, Diss Corn Hall, from 10am to 4pm on Friday May 9 and Saturday May 10. It is also hoped to recruit volunteers to help with the woodland, and Mr Mabey will be on hand to meet supporters. He will also introduce a final forum at 3pm on the Saturday to summarise the input of the two days.

A leaflet will also be delivered to households and businesses in Diss explaining the objectives and inviting both physical support and donations to the project.

For more information contact Richard Pither, project secretary, on 01379 652825.

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