Alice Holt - United Kingdom
UK ECN site. Alice Holt forest lies in the Weald between the North and South Downs in southern England. Alice Holt Forest Park covers 851 hectares of mainly Corsican pine but approximately 140 ha. of original 1820 oak still remain. The ancient forest is now a truly multi-purpose woodland where research, conservation, timber production and recreation co-exist. The target sampling square is located in 90 hectares of 80 year old semi-natural oak woodland. Gault clay dominates the underlying geology. For the past 25 years intensive monitoring has been carried out under a variety of programs at this highly instrumented site. The site is part of a network of such highly monitored forests across both the UK and Europe. The Alice Holt site is owned by the Forestry Commission and is run by Forest Research under the Integrated forest monitoring programme. Collaboration with other research programs is actively encouraged.
General Characteristics, Purpose, History
Sustainable forest management requires an understanding of the effects of management on ecosystem function, biodiversity and the wider environment. The Long term Intensive monitoring within the research forest, including an Eddy co-variance system, allows us to understand management and climate effects on ecosystem function. The research aims to (i) provide integration and analysis of environmental data to improve our understanding of the drivers and responses of environmental change; (ii) identify natural and human induced change and understand their causes, (iii) provide comparable long-term data sets for modelling and research purposes.
The history of Alice Holt forest can be traced back over 2000 years and is believed to have originated during the Atlantic period. Iron Age and Roman relics found within the forest point to a long history of human inhabitation. The forest has belonged to the crown since William the Conqueror adopted it as a Royal Hunting Forest around 1030. The Forestry Commission has actively managed the forest since 1924 and it has been the focus of research activities since 1946. From 1994 onwards extensive environmental monitoring activities have been carried out at the site.
Affiliation and Network Specific Information