Forest of Dean plantation

Planting more of the same ‘native woodlands’ that now litter the English countryside with little more ambition in their creation and management than a membership publicity drive or community engagement excercise, will be regretted long after the PR-masters behind them have past. In their own way, these are as regrettable as the dark satanic rows of conifers that were planted sixty years ago.
If we continue to plant green fuzz across our food-producing fields, with little concern either for the impending need to be more self-sufficient in food production, or for the need to reduce our enormous reliance on timber imports, Britain’s environmental credibility will be increasingly undermined.Continue Reading

Securing healthy, sustainably managed forests in the light of climate change and its severe consequences is one of the biggest challenges we have to solve in Europe and globally. This is the headline from the Forest Europe Ministerial Conference that opened today, hosted by Norway. The fact that Europe’s forestsContinue Reading

Earlier this week The Independent newspaper published the winning essay about the future of forests in England.  This was an open competition with an attractive £5000 prize that was announced in February, just before the Government scrapped plans to sell England’s publicly-owned forests.  Read more. About 150 essays of 1500-2000Continue Reading

In the Netherlands forestry is undetaken by the Forestry and Wildlife Service Staatsbosbeheer: managing 250,000 hectares of land for sixteen million Dutch people. It provides some interesting comparisons to the UK where forestry governance is in the spotlight.Continue Reading

In principle there were some good ideas in what the Government sought to achieve by reviewing the ownership of England’s forests.  The Forestry Commission are a great public organisation and achieve fantastic results for a relatively small cost to the taxpayer, although we should recognise that there is also roomContinue Reading