About us

Why are we Passionate about Trees?

Trees make a huge contribution to our daily lives, where we choose to be and how we feel. They are often taken for granted, but their absence or loss is strongly felt.

The Forest of Avon Trust’s ethos is to deliver the huge benefits of trees & woodlands to as many people as possible in Bristol & Avon.

The Directors and staff team of the Forest of Avon Trust are passionate about what we do, business- like in our approach and proud of our projects. The Trust is an independent charitable company limited by guarantee, company number: 6252763, charity number: 1122314.

Established in 2008 the charity is entirely funded through sponsorship, donations, the Friend’s scheme, grants, fees and legacies. Starting with £3,000, we are well on our way to achieving our aim of £1,000,000+ investment by 2019.

The charity supports the Forest of Avon and is part of the national Community Forest Partnership.

Some Benefits of Trees & Woodlands: they

  • Support learning: children benefit significantly from outdoor learning and learning about the outdoors
  • Build confidence & improve quality of life: activities outdoors promote mental and physical health
  • Speed patient recovery times: less time is spent in wards with views of trees
  • Reduce asthma: by filtering air borne pollution
  • Contribute to safer communities: flats associated with trees have less crime and people feel safer
  • Provide a legacy across the generations: local tree planting brings communities together and the results last hundreds of years
  • Cut energy use: this can be 10% lower in buildings sheltered by trees
  • Reduce flash flooding: tree reduce disturbance and damage after heavy rain
  • Are carbon neutral: if local trees are used for wood fuel or construction
  • Support the local economy: people prefer, stay longer and more frequently visit shopping areas with trees
  • Contribute to high quality environments: people pay more (3-7%) to live on tree-lined streets
  • Support inward investment: quality of life is a factor in the relocation of 57% of business executives
  • Provide diverse, sustainable, necessary and attractive products
  • Can cut transport miles by being located close to markets 
  • Create robust woodland havens: for wildlife and people in the long-term
  • Increase diversity & resilience in landscapes on the edge of towns and cities.

The Team

Jon Clark – Executive Director

A Chartered Landscape Architect and Planner, Jon Clark has worked at a senior level in community forestry for 25 years. Jon manages the charity and provides woodland and other consultancy services.

T: (0117) 963 3383, M: (07948) 994 237

E: jonclark@forestofavontrust.org

Phoebe FentonPhoebe Fenton – Charity Support Officer

Phoebe provides financial and administrative support and manages our training programme. She is experienced in office management and has a worked for charities including WWF as well as one the UK’s first specialist environmental consultancies.

T: (0117) 963 3383

E: admin@forestofavontrust.org

Anna Brunton – Community Trees & Woodlands Officer

Anna has worked in conservation since leaving college in 1994 and in woodland management in 2003.  Anna runs our trees for schools programme, the veteran tree project and provides woodland skills training.

T: (0117) 963 3383

E: woodlands@forestofavontrust.org

 Nicola Ramsden- Health & Wellbeing Officer

Nicola was a biologist and botanist before training to be a Forest School leader. She works as an OT technician in mental health services where she leads nature walks and  sensory activities. Her work for the Trust centres on Woodland Projects to promote the health and wellbeing benefits of woodlands to groups including those with dementia, learning difficulties and mental health issues and she would love to hear from charities/individuals supporting these groups, who would like to get involved.

T: (0117) 963 3383

E: wellbeing@forestofavontrust.org


Jon Attwood- Forest School Level 1 Training & Schools Lead

Jon led outdoor learning and conservation groups for 15 years, has been a Forest School leader for over 10 years and ran our training programme and Natural Connections projects over 5 years. Jon now leads on our Level 1 training, school Inset day provision and wider educational work.

T: (07889) 279418

E: jonattwood@forestofavontrust.org

Rachel Tomlinson- Woodland Activities Leader

Rachel is an experienced website copywriter/ producer and has worked with us for 5 years delivering training, supporting the Natural Connections project and running woodland activities. Rachel works with Nicola Ramsden to deliver our activities for adults with learning disabilities, people with mental health needs and people with dementia.

Jackie Roby- Forest School Level 3 Trainer

Jackie is a lively and enthusiastic individual, who uses her obvious passion for learning in the outdoors to engage and inspire both children, adults and the occasional dog.

On paper, she is a qualified teacher, forest school leader and trainer, an outdoor first-aider, a skilled environmental educator and has a PGDip in Education.

Jackie has worked for many of Bristol’s green institutions including the Avon Gorge and Downs Wildlife Project, Bristol Zoo and the Wild Place Project.


Trust Directors

Keith Betton (Chairman), Chris Bloor (Access Director); Keith Bonham MBE DL, Nigel Howe, Rt. Hon. The Earl of Ducie, Rachel Tonkin, Professor William Scott FRSA, Peter Wise FRGS FCIM, (PR Director).

Patron: Mike Dilger

Mike Dilger is a naturalist, presenter and writer.





Patron: Professor Alice Roberts

Professor Alice Roberts is an anatomist, writer and broadcaster.