This 1998 report is about identifying where new woodlands should be established. In it four contrasting lowland regions of England were chosen in order to test their relative capacity to absorb new woodland planting. Representative 10 × 10 km areas were selected from Natural Areas in the East Anglian Plain, Rockingham Forest, the Trent Valley and Rises and the Vale of Taunton and Quantock Fringes in which physical, biological, soils and land use data were collated. The implications for conservation are that, up to a certain density of planting, strategies for Rockingham Forest might favour those scenarios which reduce interwood distances and create conditions likely to benefit edge species, while in poor-wooded East Anglia, Taunton and Trent, buffering and envelope strategies which increase the core woodland area might be favoured initially. Although woodland planting incentives at the time favoured the random placement of woods in the landscape, it was thought that significant gains for conservation might be achieved, depending on the region, by adopting simple targeting strategies such woodland buffering, or devising envelopes based on clusters of ancient woodland habitat.
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