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Community forests: Images and reality

Watson, S.K.; (1992) Community forests: Images and reality. Masters thesis (M.Phil), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Forestry has been part of the British landscape heritage since William the Conqueror. He introduced this form of extensive, managed woodlands as "game reserves" for his deer. More recently forestry has been associated with the extensive conifer plantations of the highlands. Forestry is a reflection of certain policy objectives which have specific land-use implications. The community forest represents the next generation of forestry policy. The community forest proposal represents a vision initiated by the Countryside Commission and Forestry Commission. This vision is to set up multi-purpose forestry around the urban fringes of major connurbations. The "community forest" aims to create a re-generated, aesthetically pleasing well-managed, environmental amenity, via voluntary participation and joint partnerships between the private and public sector initiating voluntary participation. The proposal has been set up to tackle the land-use and management problems of the urban fringe; the need to find a new role for surplus agricultural land and a re-direction of forestry towards a lowland amenity and environmentally sensitive policy. Since its launch in 1989 twelve forest areas have been designated. This thesis argues, via a political-economy approach, that the realities of these community forests are quite different from the images. This theoretical and contextual approach gives a deeper understanding of how the proposal will be implemented and the possible repercussions of the policy. Through this contextual analysis, it can be argued, that the community forest proposal represents a new agenda for the urban fringes. The forests could be the beginning of a new management area within which the Greenbelt and local authority planners' authority can be undermined. The community forest proposal represents an idealistic image that in reality could represent a challenge, by Central Government and capital interests, to the autonomy of local authority planners. Community forest could represent a back door challenge to the planning system in urban fringe areas.

Type: Thesis (Masters)
Qualification: M.Phil
Title: Community forests: Images and reality
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
Keywords: Biological sciences; Coommunity forests
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10110998
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