Sence Valley Forest Plan 2019

Closed 30 Nov 2018

Opened 20 Oct 2018


Forest Plans define the long term vision for a woodland or a collection of woodlands and set out how management will move towards achieving this vision over the next ten years. We would like to invite you or your organisation to leave some feedback on the Sence Valley Forest Plan (FP) summarises proposals by the Forestry Commission for the management for 5 woodlands in the National Forest.  Sence Valley (109.9ha), Kelham Bridge (26ha), Mill Hill Wood (7ha), Heather Wood (10.9ha) and David Taylor Wood (3.5ha).  The plan area of 157.3ha lies 20km west of Leicester and 15km southwest from Loughborough with easy access from the M1 and M42.

Sence Valley Forest Plan lies in a post-industrial landscape which is now being transformed as part of The National Forest after decades of coal mining, clay and gravel extraction into a green woodland landscape.  The woodlands were all planted in the last 20 years and are popular with local residents for walks, picnics and bird watching.  

To celebrate the Forestry Commission Centenary which takes place in 2019 an additional 48ha of land has been purchased to the north of Sence Valley and this will be the Forestry Commission's flagship planting site for the centenary.  The new woodland design will include an avenue of cherry trees close to the River Sence, a network of open access routes for the public and be stocked with resilient species, taking account of the threats posed by climate change.


The main objectives for the Sence Valley Forest Plan will be: 


  • Diversify the current forest structure through the introduction of a thinning/felling programme and enrichment planting.
  • Use a cutting programme on the grassland and scrub habitats sympathetic to the habitats requirements of the flora and fauna and maximise the available feeding and nesting habitats.
  • Within the new woodland to be planted in 2019 use a variety of conifers interspersed by small blocks of single species broadleaves to provide strong visual changes in colour and texture for visitors and a wide variety of woodland habitats and cover for wildlife.
  • Manage the wetland habitats for the benefit of wildlife and to improve water quality in the River Sence.
  • Use a variety of silvicultural techniques to maintain soil structure, stability and site infrastructure.
  • Identify, retain and recruit Trees of Special Interest and increase deadwood habitats.


  • Emphasis on creating a safe welcoming environment to be enjoyed by local families and visitors to the area
  • Sympathetically design appropriately scaled interventions to improve and maintain the visual integration of the forest.
  • Provide public facilities on site to ensure easy access for quiet recreation activities.
  • Work with and support local businesses to provide public services on site.
  • Enable local people to develop their skills and their potential employability, through volunteer opportunities and training.

Economic Growth:

  • Production of commercial conifers and broadleaves managed on a sustainable basis to improve future timber revenues and diversify species to mitigate against the impacts of pest, disease and climate change
  • Introduction of new species to help mitigate against the impact of climate change, pests and diseases and allow mixed broadleaf and conifer stands to develop.
  • Seek opportunities to develop appropriate income streams that will enable us to continue managing sites in a sustainable way.

Please select the Link at the bottom of this webpage to open the pdf copy of the Sense Valley FP Maps

Why We Are Consulting

We are asking for your feedback to ensure the objectives are considered and balanced for the proposals being put forward in the Forest Plan. Today there are just the maps available that will be on display at the public consultation day in Sence Valley Forest Park on Tuesdays 23rd October 2018 between 12:30 and 18:30.  Following which the full forest plan will be written up and made available here the week beginning the 5th November.

If anyone has any data sets associated to these woodlands which we need to take into account prior to submission for approval, this is the opportunity. The Forest Plan maps are available to download below in PDF format.

This part of the consultation will run for 30th November 2018. Any comments should be submitted through the online survey form before the closing date. Feedback received after the closing date may not be able to be considered. Please select the documents links below to read the Forest Plan.

All of our forests and woodlands in this Forest District are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council ® (FSC®) and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification™ (PEFC™). All Forestry Commission forests and woods are independently certified as sustainably managed, to continue to benefit future generations.

What Happens Next

The online Stakeholder Consultation has now closed. We are examining the feedback and where possible, will incorporate suggestions into the Forest Plan. We will then submit the Forest Plan to Forest Services, the regulatory arm of the Forestry Commission, for any further consultation required prior to approval.


  • Landowner / manager
  • Local community member
  • Forestry Commission staff
  • Forest visitor
  • Forestry Commission agent / contractor / partner
  • Wildlife management
  • Wood processor - including timber and woodfuel production
  • Woodland group
  • Central England
  • North West & West Midlands


  • Forest design plans