My wife took me up the Quantock Hills at the weekend and sadly whilst I could do a very long walk, I was put in a small area that fascinated the heck out of me.
The Somerset Quantocks is indeed an exceptional area of natural beauty; here the forest is superbly managed. They have had problems with the recent Larch disease (Phytophthora ramorum (P. ramorum) . This is an awful disease; it is a fungus-like pathogen of plants that causes extensive damage and mortality to trees and other plants. The first UK finding was made on viburnum in February 2002 at a garden centre in Sussex. The first record of P. ramorum on a mature tree in the UK was on a 100-year-old Quercus falcata (southern red oak) in November 2003. (With thanks to our forestry commission for the info and the hard work to eradicate)
In the image below you can see that a swathe of trees has been removed. This is all about forest management. The area from camera to the end is around one hundred metres!!