All about the Forest
Over twenty years ago, visionary leaders made the decision to create a new, large, forested area in England, to show all the many benefits that come from woodland near where people live and work. The area in the Midlands which came to be known as The National Forest was chosen in part because the woodland cover was very low (about 6%). There was also a great need for regeneration after the end of mining and, importantly, incredible public support for the idea.
Since then, the 200 square miles of The National Forest have been transformed through the planting of millions of trees (8m by October 2012) and the creation of many other valuable habitats. It boasts many new attractions and forest-based activities and has stimulated many woodland-linked businesses. Whilst more than 200,000 people live in the Forest, it is also within just 90 minutes' journey time for about 10 million people and is open to all, with an increasing network of trails and recreational opportunities.
- Read more about the forest
Forest cover, which includes open spaces, water and other habitats, is nudging 20% in 2012. The National Forest depends on a wide range of partners including many landowners, who retain their land whilst planting all or some of it to form part of the Forest. The original idea, of blending new and maturing woodland within a wide variety of landscapes, has stood the test of time.
The exciting agenda now is to continue to plant the right woods in the right place, to make the most of what has been created and for more people to enjoy and love the Forest. Soon, many of the early woodlands will be ready for first thinnings. Foresters and woodland owners enjoy this challenging phase, as bold decision-making, sharp tools and action are needed to steer the woodland's development. The effect can be a dramatic step-change - when the wood begins to look less like lines of trees and more like what we imagine a wood to be. We want to make sure this happens and that the woods grow to healthy maturity.
With support from Central Government, (Defra), The National Forest is seen as a national exemplar of this kind of multipurpose forestry on a large, landscape, scale. It has an increasing profile nationally and internationally. The National Forest Company leads the creation of The National Forest and as well as delivering day-to-day its small team is committed to research and evidence on the progress of the Forest.
- Read more: National Forest Company Research
The development of The National Forest offers unprecedented opportunities to create and enhance a wide range of wildlife habitats.
- Read more: Nature Conservation
Locking up our Carbon
Helping create The National Forest is one of the many steps you could take towards offsetting the effects of climate change.
- Read more: Locking up our Carbon
Read more: Where is The National Forest? |
Read more: Interactive Map |
Read more: Growing Forest |
29 Apr 2013
The National Forest Company (NFC) has recently welcomed Richard Drakeley to its team.
11 Apr 2013
The Bingham, a boutique hotel and restaurant located in Richmond, London, joined forces with the National Forest Company recently to plant trees in a new woodland in Derbyshire, on the northern boundary of The National Forest.
Find more articles: News
25 May 2013
Conkers, a unique mix of indoor and outdoor experiences. Explore four discovery zones with interactive exhibits, ride on the Conkachoo train and go wild in the adventure play areas. New bare foot walk and interactive exhibit.
25 May 2013
The former home of the Earls of Harrington.
Find more: Events
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22 Mar 2013
It's often implied, in our multi-riven country, that to live in a town or a city is 'modern' and to live elsewhere, isn't. Quite what's meant by this isn't always clear to me, but away from the urban, life is apparently traditional, a refuge from the hustle and bustle; it's not where innovation is expected to happen, that's for sure.
26 Feb 2013
Just under two years ago my knowledge of The National Forest was a bit like my knowledge of today's technology ... I was aware of it but, whisper it, I wasn't that interested! Then, two things happened in a short space of time - we moved house and I was made redundant.
Find more: Blog