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Sussex - Ashdown Forest

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A very special area of heathland and woodland close to where I live.
Covering an area of 6500 acres of Sussex it excels in August with the swathes of purple heather in full bloom and producing an intoxicating scent.
In the medieval era, Ashdown Forest was enclosed as a royal hunting ground behind a 23 mile pale, or fence.
The Forest was regularly visited by Henry VIII, who rode out from his hunting lodge at King’s Standing.
Most of the oak trees were felled to be used for ships built for the Armada. This has left a heathland habitat that is rapidly disappearing in the UK and allows protected species of birds, reptiles and plants to thrive there.

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