Below is the reply recieved from Anna Coke, UKIP PPC (Mid Norfolk), to the letter to the candidates in the constituencies in or around Thetford Forest Forest issued by the Friends of Thetford Forest (FoTF):
Our family owns and manages the oldest continues cover forest in the British Isles - here in Weasenham in Mid Norfolk. The woods are cited in many text books as the perfect example of how to manage forestry. I am a passionate forester, but cannot condone the mismanagement of Thetford by the forestry commission. They take the short term approach, cut down great swathes of trees over and over without giving the soil time to recover and frankly do absolutely nothing about the muntjac deer invasion or the grey squirrel - both are invasive species, and both disastrous for our forests.
I understand the passion that the British public have about our forests, but until they are properly informed about the long term impending ruin of our forests under Government control we are all on a losing ticket.
Our family has fought long and hard with various Government departments, all with short term political interests. It was my husband's Grandfather who finally made an incompetent treasury understand that if you tax a forest as part of an inheritance, then the next generation will have no choice but to cut much of it down to pay for the ridiculous tax. My own husband wrote the UKIP forestry and wildlife policy which is part of the UKIP Agricultural policy.
I do hope that you now see that as a family of foresters we have done more than most to preserve this precious commodity.
As I cannot sign the friends pledge I would be grateful for you to circulate this email to others who may be unwittingly misguided.
With kind regards,