Plans for the expansion of the Sylva Foundation Centre in Long Wittenham have been lodged with South Oxfordshire District Council.
The Foundation wants to change the use of land and pigsty area from agricultural to forestry use. Other proposals include the demolition of barns and replacement with a building for storing forestry equipment and a mobile sawmill.
There will be room for parking along with an improved access from Little Wittenham Road. It’s proposed to erect bunds to protect trees and screening to reduce noise from the sawmill.
Paul Orsi from the Foundation says the tenant moving into the site does forestry work locally and manages woodlands. He has a mobile sawmill which most of the time he will take by trailer to his place of work. Possibly once a week he will use the sawmill on site at Sylva for chopping logs – a very low-key affair according to Mr Orsi.
The Foundation has been in touch with people living nearby to re-site the building to minimise sound disturbance. There will be clauses in the tenant’s lease in respect of the number of hours the sawmill can be used. Mr Orsi says the Foundation is willing to talk to residents about any concerns they might have about the plans.