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  4. Enhancing our natural capital

Enhancing our natural capital

Land Management Plans

West Oxfordshire District Council owns and is responsible for the management of a wide range of public open green spaces across the district, with larger recreation sites including;

  • Langel Common
  • Kilkenny Country Park
  • Deer Park Wood
  • North Leigh Common
  • Church Green

We are in the process of reviewing the management of the different habitat and natural features across the sites, to identify opportunities where improvements could be made through changing the way things are maintained by our grounds maintenance team Ubico. Many of these areas have the potential to be enhanced for both wildlife and people, and new landscape management plans are to be created to maximise that wide range of natural benefits these sites bring.

We will be working with our grounds maintenance team, local community wildlife groups and habitat specialists to establish changes in management on our sites, from small road verges to larger parks and commons. We also hope to build on the day-to-day management with new habitat creation projects, and will continue to support our local volunteer groups, the Witney Woodland Volunteers and the Friends of North Leigh Common.

This work is part of the Council’s Local Recovery Plan. The Council is committed to taking action to ensure that climate ambitions are met and that the value of our natural environment which has become so evident through the Covid-19 pandemic to our local communities is safeguarded and enhanced.

Links to climate change

Improving the management of the habitats at the sites can also help to manage the effects of climate change. For example, the planting of more trees and the restoration of grassland areas can not only lead to the sequestration of more carbon, but can also mitigate against flooding events and improve habitat connectivity for species that are most affected by climate change such as birds and bees. We are reviewing our sites to identify opportunities for nature-based solutions, allowing us to mitigate against and adapt to our changing climate, as well as make improvements for both wildlife and people.

What can you do?

Wildlife needs protecting and habitats need managing all across the district. Communities can provide vital help by promoting, protecting and enhancing biodiversity in their local area.

If you are a town or parish council, guidance on the protection and creation of habitats can be found in the Oxfordshire Community and Parish Guide to Biodiversity

Wild Oxfordshire also has information on existing local wildlife groups, best practice projects and how to set up your own community environment group. 

If you are a resident of West Oxfordshire, you too can play a part in nature’s recovery, with guidance from the links below;