Newly planted field of trees in plastic protective tubes
Woodland creation scheme in Suffolk © geogphotos / Alamy Stock Photo CN10J3
Woodland creation scheme in Suffolk © geogphotos / Alamy Stock Photo CN10J3

Creating New Woodland

When intending to create new woodland, you'll need the right information and advice about any potential effects on the historic environment so that you can put measures in place to protect it.

The UK Forestry Standard

The UK Forestry Standard (UKFS) (4th Edition 2017) is the reference standard for sustainable forestry in the UK.

The UKFS outlines the seven elements of sustainable forestry, of which protecting and managing the historic environment is one. It describes legal and good forestry best practice requirements and provides guidelines on how to achieve these.

Forestry Commission

In England the Forestry Commission is the main body for implementation of the UKFS compliant forestry activity. It will assess forestry proposals for woodland creation and/or tree felling against the standard before giving approval, and will also carry out checks to ensure it is being complied with.

Depending on the nature and scale of proposals, both Historic England and local authority historic environment services may be consulted as part of this process. In addition to advising on applications for planting under Countryside Stewardship, Historic England is a statutory consultee under the EIA Forestry Regulations.

Grants for woodland creation

A number of organisations, including the Forestry Commission, offer funding to support woodland creation. All current government-funded grant schemes require woodland proposers to collate historic environment information, seek historic environment advice and look for historic features on the ground in their proposal area. If these checks identify significant evidence, specialist archaeological surveys may be needed.

Current grant schemes for woodland creation include: