A WOODLAND in Monksilver has won a national award.

Combe Sydenham Country Park, owned by William Theed, scooped the Royal Forestry Society (RFS) Duke of Cornwall Multipurpose Woodlands Award 2012.

Mr Theed has packed a huge amount into his 130 hectares of woodland, from education activities to off-road vehicle and mountain bike tracks.

Trees are grown commercially for timber but conservation schemes are also in place to manage endangered species and enhance derelict traditional Exmoor hedgebanks.

Mr Theed said: “The woodlands are incredibly important to the estate. I am delighted that so many different people can use them in so many different ways, all benefiting from the trees which are, in the longer term, being grown to provide a high value timber crop.”

Judge Tim Sawyer, formerly of the Forestry Commission, said: “The forestry industry faces a tough challenge persuading the public that management practices such as coppicing, thinning and cutting down trees, and managing squirrels and deer, can be good for woodlands, but our winners demonstrate just how much can be achieved when appropriate techniques are used well.”