A woman in Chesham has said she is running forest activities for children on a plot of land where planning rules are being broken.

Uruss Ahmed has been using a fenced-off parcel of land by Pednor Road to help ‘underprivileged girls’ learn new skills.

Her brother Syed Mubarak Ahmed who owns the land missed a deadline to remove an unauthorised fence bordering his plot and is currently facing legal action from Buckinghamshire Council to clear the site.

His previous plans to grow cabbages on the land and the ongoing enforcement saga has sparked anger among local people and a swirl of rumours about what is happening in the peaceful stretch of sloping woodland identified by the council as ‘plot 14’.

READ MORE: Chesham landowner faces legal action over fence in woods where he planned kimchi farm

Uruss has now sought to set the record straight about her plans for the woodland, saying that she did not put up the fence and had nothing to do with her brother’s plans to grow cabbages to make kimchi.

She said: “All I want to do right now is focus on a project where I can bring young people here, introduce them to country life and nature and teach them skills for life.”

The resident, who used to live in Iver Heath before moving to the Taplow and Maidenhead area, was speaking to the Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS) during a visit to the plot this month.

Uruss, whose family own other neighbouring plots of land, has been visiting the site for more than 20 years.

She said: “I have met some lovely people here and have been saying to them, when we start, can you come and teach them some skills.

“It could be anything. They can teach them knitting, sewing, digging, any kind of craft.”

Uruss has been bringing girls to the site during the school holidays for daytime camping to help them learn new skills like weaving and has hosted different activities including walks and barbecues.

The resident revealed she also plans to expand her activities on the site to include animals.

She said: “I want to have farm animals. As a young child I loved animals and still love animals. I want to bring sheep. I have purchased the sheep already. I have got the licences. They are actually at a nearby farm.”

Responding to some of the rumours about the land, Uruss said that no trees have been felled at the site since the council imposed a tree preservation order across plots 1 to 14 in 2021.

The council has also confirmed this, stating that a recent site visit after police were called, showed ‘no evidence of illegal work on protected trees’.

Uruss also spoke about the fence owned by family, which although being on private land, closes off a trail previously used by walkers for decades.

She says that some members of the public have tried to remove parts of the fence with wire cutters and that she previously saw an old lady kicking it.

The resident said she regularly clears the surrounding footpaths of any debris for people to walk along and that where the fence has fallen down, she tries to push it away from paths.

Uruss also said she had seen ‘a lot of rudeness’ from some local people and even racist comments directed to her and workers on the site.

She said: “It upsets me that educated people from good backgrounds are behaving in this manner without of any understanding of what is happening here.”

Uruss, who has complained to the police, said that people have asked ‘what are black people doing here?’ and ‘are you allowed to work in the UK?’, while one person assumed that she was paying a worker minimum wage.

Other slurs have included, ‘go back to your country’, ‘you must be paying workers cash in hand’ and ‘you are a criminal’.

Uruss said: “I have carried on bringing the girls, but people have been so rude to the girls as well, swearing. Old men and women walking though the land and swearing at girls.”

Jane MacBean, a Conservative councillor for the area, said Uruss’s plans for the site sound ‘great’ but stressed that they must be carried out with the proper processes in place.

She told the LDRS: “With minors, she will have to have some kind of formal organisation and safeguarding policies.”

Cllr MacBean added: “As long as it is done within the confines of what is right and proper and any legal requirements, then fantastic.”

The councillor said that the people of Chesham ‘revere and respect’ the site and want to see debris that is currently on the land cleared away.

Be the first to know about all things breaking news, court, and crime across Bucks! 📱💡 Unlimited local news, an ad-free app, and a digital replica of our print edition—all with 80% fewer ads on our site. Subscribe now for a faster news experience, click here for details.