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Latest posts form the charity

The Woodland Trust asks for help

The Woodland Trust says that one of the UK’s most iconic landscapes around Loch Arkaig, is in urgent need of help.  The Trust has been given the opportunity to buy woodland of international importance.

The Loch Arkaig Pine Forest combines two areas of native Caledonian pine, oak and birch woodland.  The 1,200 acre western wood, Coille a Ghuibhais (‘the pine forest’) and the 1,300 acre eastern wood, An t-Seann Fhrith (‘the old deer forest’) together comprise one of the largest remaining fragments of ancient Caledonian pinewood in Scotland.

The Trust notes that the forest is not in good shape because of clear-felling in the 18th century, the planting of non-native conifers in the 1960s, grazing by sheep and deer, and  training exercises by commando units during the Second World War.

Although this is a long way from the Forest of Avon, it’s a valuable (in every sense) and iconic landscape.  You can read more, and donate, here.


Posted in: Latest News |

The Białowieża Forest

Last week, the BBC’s Hugh Sykes reported on The Białowieża Forest, which lies between Belarus and Poland.

This is said to be Europe’s last significant primeval forest which may be under threat from commercial logging and the bark beetle.

Sykes says that the government in Warsaw has more than tripled the quantity of timber that they will permit to be extracted, and that naturalists say that allowing more logging in Białowieża defeats its purpose as a World Heritage Site.  Foresters say they need to remove more wood so that they can make a decent living.  They also want to remove dead trees  because they say that the rotting ‘cadavers’ blight the beauty of the forest, and that tourists don’t like them because they spoil their photographs.

All this seems a familiar story as various groups vie for their own interests, and what constitutes appropriate management is contested.  The story has rich detail on all this.  Meanwhile, you can hear what a primeval forest sounds like on the BBC website

Posted in: Latest News |

June 17th is Empty Classroom Day

And where better to spend it than in the Forest of Avon where there are opportunities galore for activities to remind school pupils that there is life, meaning and sheer enjoyment outside the classroom.

Click here for details.  We hope to see you in the Forest.

Posted in: Latest News |

Local Schools Plant Orchards

10 schools from across the area learnt about the benefits of trees and planted orchards as part of our Schools Orchard project this year. Supported by Western Power Distribution, worked with schools in Bath & North East Somerset, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire, some of which were also part of the Natural Connections outdoor learning project.

We worked with the following schools, providing guidance, free fruit trees and helping out with planting where needed:

Cameley Primary, Bath & North East Somerset

Welton Primary, Bath & North East Somerset

Ashcombe Primary, North Somerset

Crockerne Primary, North Somerset

Westhaven Special School, North Somerset

Courtney Road Primary, South Gloucestershire

Longwell Green Primary, South Gloucestershire

King’s Forest Primary,  South Gloucestershire

Parkwall Primary, South Gloucestershire

The Meadows Primary, South Gloucestershire.

A big thank you to the hundreds of children who got involved and planted a grand total of 95 fruit trees.

If you would like to sponsor an orchard of English fruit trees at a local school, please email:

Posted in: Business Sponsors, Garden Forest & Allotment Orchard, Latest News, Our Projects | Tagged , , |

The Ultimate Guide to Preventing Tree Drought

Liverpool Tree Care has published “The Ultimate Guide to Preventing Tree Drought“, and you can read it here.

The guide explains in detail how tree drought occurs and then lists four practical steps you can take to reduce the risk of its happening.



The website has other useful features, such as a focus on Horse Chestnut Bleeding Canker.

Posted in: Future Woods, Latest News, Safeguarding our Trees | Tagged |

Woodland Wellbeing

                                                                                                                                                                                                     A fundamental part of the ethos of the charity has been to both apply and develop best practice in the delivery of the benefits of the being in the natural environment. We apply the principles of Forest School to deliver successful projects tailored to the needs of diverse groups tackling isolation, developing confidence and more widely improving quality of life. We are currently proud to be delivering projects working with people with mental health needs and also those with dementia.

Our work is delivered by our skilled Associates: Nicola Ramsden and Rachel Tomlinson. We can offer 6, 8, 12 & 16 week programmes and ‘taster days’. To find out more about our work and to discuss a new project, email:

Posted in: Latest News, Woodland Wellbeing | Tagged |

30 Days Wild in the Forest of Avon

June is 30 Days Wild month – and the Wildlife Trusts would have us all involved.  They say:

“Feel happier, healthier and more connected to nature by doing something wild every day for thirty days this June.  No matter where you live – from an urban jungle to a windswept mountain – wildlife and wild places are all around, waiting to be discovered by you.”

So, how’s your wildness coming on?  There are lots of opportunities in the Forest of Avon.

Posted in: Latest News |

Learning at Westonbirt

Westonbirt arboretum has a series of learning activities led by its own staff, as well as facilities available to groups led by others.

The in-house activities cover Key Stage 2 , Secondary , FE & HE and Initial Teaching Training , running until November 2016.

Here are the frequently-asked questions for self-led groups.

Westonbirt’s activity packs are free and can be downloaded from these links:

There are also Explorer backpack which provide resources for a whole class to use and there are two of each backpack available.

Each explorer backpack costs £15 to hire for the day and needs to be booked in advance. If you have any further queries, or wish to book a backpack, please email the learning team.


Posted in: Forest School, Latest News | Tagged , , |

Are you going to the Arb Show tomorrow?

Westonbirt is hosting the Arb Show on June 3rd and 4th.  Are you going?  It looks a good day out.  There’s free entry for

  • Arboricultural Assoviation members
  • Friends of Westonbirt, and
  • youngsters under 16.




Posted in: Latest News |

London Tree Week

This is London Tree Week, and everyone is invited to celebrate London’s trees and woodlands with a week of special events.  Activities include:

  • Tree Stories of London exhibition at City Hall,  lower ground floor

The exhibition is open on week days from Tuesday 31 May to Friday 10 June, 8:30am-5:30pm. See how to find City Hall. 

It’s great to see this, even though it’s a long way from the Forest of Avon.  And it’s good to focus minds on trees and woods, while always remembering that we should be mindful of trees every week, and not just once a year.

Posted in: Latest News |