21 March 2013
The Forestry Commission is today launching its new approach to Learning on the Public Forest Estate in England.
To celebrate this and the fact that it’s World Forestry Day, over 1,000 people will be joining in learning events taking place across the country.
The overall aim of the strategy is to give everyone, everywhere, the chance to connect with the nation’s trees and forests so that they understand the importance of sustainable forest management and act positively to safeguard forests for the future.
The Forestry Commission is developing a diverse range of learning resources and working with others to increase the number of events held so that more people than ever can access and learn about the nation’s forests across England.
At Westonbirt, The National Arboretum, the learning team will be taking a Sixth Form group with profound multiple learning difficulties on a sensory trail. Sensory seasonal activities will include finding spring colour in Westonbirt’s global tree collection, finding out about woodlands for wildlife and taking willow cuttings for propagation.
Events also taking place across the country include a land skills activity for a college group in Whitwell, Derbyshire, shelter building activities for 80 eight year old pupils at Whinlatter Forest in Cumbria and local primary schools in Kent are visiting Bedgebury Pinetum to go on an endangered tree walk.
Sir Harry Studholme, Forestry Commission Chair, said;
“Trees and woodlands are important to all of us. They frame our landscapes and shape our environment. Our quality of life, even the air we breathe is enhanced by our trees. The timber in our woods impacts not just the natural but also the built environment. Our buildings and our furniture are showcases to the versatility of wood.
“The Public Forest Estate in England is a fantastic platform for the Forestry Commission to show the best of what can be done with forestry. How we manage our nation’s forests sustainably and safeguard them for the future: Leading the way in demonstrating how forests are an important part of the economy and good for the environment, while at the same time a space for people to enjoy themselves and experience nature.
“World Forestry Day promotes awareness of the value of forests across the globe. The learning resources launched today give information on the protection of, production and recreation of forests reminding us about how important they are. What better day to join in the celebrations and launch our new approach to learning!”
Rachel Giles, Forestry Commission Learning Manager, added;
“We want to enable everyone, everywhere, to connect with the nation’s trees and forests so that they understand their importance and the role of the Forestry Commission in their management.
“It’s a really exciting time for us and will mean that more learning opportunities will be available for more people in more forests than ever before.”
For further information about learning opportunities in forests near to where you live, visit the learning pages on the Forestry Commission’s website www.forestry.gov.uk.
More information about learning at Westonbirt Arboretum can be found at www.forestry.gov.uk/westonbirt-education.
Notes to editors:
Forestry Commission Press Office: Rebecca Turner, 0117 906 6030 / 07833 672903, email@example.com
Westonbirt Arboretum Communications Manager: Katrina Podlewska, 01666 881207, firstname.lastname@example.org