The Countryside & Rights of Way Act (CRoW) was introduced in 2000 and provided new access rights on areas of land such as mountain and moorland.
The CRoW Act also introduced the ability to voluntarily dedicate woodland for free public access in perpetuity. Since then, Forest Enterprise has dedicated the majority of the public forest estate in England. The total area of dedicated woodland in England is 137,000 Hectares.
As part of CRoW, if an owner wishes to restrict access in dedicated woodland they may require permission from the Forestry Commission. The Forestry Commission considers whether the restriction is necessary (e.g. tree harvesting operations and public safety) and if so what area needs to be restricted over what period.