Woodstock Town Council

Incorporated by Royal Charter of Henry VI in 1453

Environment

To all FRIENDS of the WOODSTOCK WATERMEADOWS  
Anyone who’d like to  help with monitoring the flora and fauna in the meadows, checking daily on the cows when they come back next year, reporting any problems like broken fences, and joining in on occasional work parties (pulling up himalayan balsam in the summer to stop it popping seeds everywhere, clearing scrub to open up the central meadows again and clearing ditches in the autumn to keep the water moving), please contact Susan Offen, 01993 812171, susanoffen29@gmail.com.
The really heavy work will continue to be done by volunteer groups like the Green Gym, Oxford Conservation Volunteers, and commercial contractors, all under the auspices of the Town Council. 
Cllr Emma Jay.

Woodstock's environment portfolio includes:-

Natural habitats at:-
The towns
Watermeadows,
The Budds Close Nature Reserve (OWL), and the OWL extension currently under consideration and
the Woodstock Community Woodland

Children's Play Areas at
New Road,
Budds Close and
Old Woodstock

Cemeteries at
Green Lane (Lawn Cemetery)
Hensington Road
St Mary Magdalene Church (closed cemetery)
A table of current fees and charges for the town's cemeteries can be downloaded here
You can read "Woodstock Town Council - Rules for Using the Cemeteries" here
and
A Summary of The Green Lane Lawn Cemetery Rules and Regulations here

The town also has Allotment plots managed by the Allotments Society - click here for details

The Water Meadows
The water meadows are a unique feature in the heart of the town providing a valuable habitat for birds, small mammals, and plants from small aquatic species to mature trees. It covers 5.5 hectares of land on the flood plain of the River Glyme and is easily accessible to the public as an area of quiet tranquillity. It is bounded on the north by the mill stream which, these days, carries most of the water through and under the main A44 road and in to the Blenheim Lake by the seven arches bridge. On the south side it is bounded by the more modest flows of the residual Glyme river. The watermeadows are frequently flooded in winter although drier areas have been set aside for managed grazing. The area is home to a large number of pollarded willows, white poplar and more recently planted species. Whilst the Watermeadows Management Committee are committed to retaining the natural characteristics of the area there is a need for regular maintenance, particularly the requirement to keep to reasonable levels, the amount of Himalayan Balsam which if left unattended would swamp other plant life in the meadow.

The management policy for this unique habitat area is set out in the Watermeadows Management Plan, a comprehensive document drawn up for the Town Council by the conservation group The Wychwood Project.
From 1st June 2016 the Wychwood Project will be managing many aspects of the Woodstock water meadows under a contract from the Town Council.

The Old Woodstock Line (OWL) Nature Reserve
To read the latest consultations news from the OWL Extension Forum, click here, and for a plan of the site click here
In 2005 the Council acquired the old railway line (Old Woodstock Line - OWL) which has lain abandoned for many years at the back of Budds Close off Banbury Road. Under the leadership of Oxfordshire Councty Council's Wychwood Project staff and the efforts of the voluntary warden Bob Pomfret and others, the area has been developed into a small linear nature reserve.
You can access Bob's annual reserve reports that provide very detailed records of the wildlife Bob has observed over the years including "red list" birds, reptiles (slow worms and grass snakes), and orchids and other plant species.

We are currently investigating the possibility of extending this reserve area westwards towards the town
Click here for the 2008 report
     Click here for the 2009 report
Click here for the 2010 report
     Click here for the 2011 report

Click here for the 2012 report      Bob's Bee Orchid survey report
Click here for the 2013 report   Click here for the 2014 report (large file - allow time for download)

The Woodstock Community Woodland  
The Town Council also has responsibility for the new Woodstock Community Woodland to the north of the town.  This project is managed by Sustainable Woodstock on behalf of the Council and all enquiries should be made to SW. Details on www.sustainablewoodstock.co.uk. Pictured here are the group on the final day of planting the 1600 trees that comprise the new woodland.

Allotments. In a further Environmental initiative, the Town Council project managed a site for 32 new allotments in Green Lane Woodstock. All enquiries should, in the first instance be addressed to the Chairman of the Allotments Association Ray Kinch c/o The Town Hall, Woodstock.

Play Areas
The children's play areas conform to current regulations and safety standards and are regularly inspected by the Town Council's environmental warden.

Cemeteries
The Council has recently taken possession of a new cemetery as an extension to the present lawn cemetery in Green Lane.  It will be fully developed as the need for new space arises.