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NEWS RELEASE No: 1487916 AUGUST 2011

Celebrate Forest Discovery Day at Westonbirt

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Forest Discovery Day Westonbirt Credit Rob Cousins

On Sunday 11 September, Westonbirt, The National Arboretum will join Forestry Commission sites across the country for a nationwide Forest Discovery Day.

From 10.30am – 4pm, families visiting Westonbirt can take part in a range of free activities to celebrate the International Year of Forests.

Visitors can experience willow crafts, meet our forest family on a trail up to the new Ted’s Fright play area in Silk Wood and find out about the different trees in our woodlands with a new family fun booklet.

To show just how much you love forests, Westonbirt will also be asking visitors to hug their favourite tree and post pictures to the Westonbirt Arboretum facebook page. Search Facebook for Westonbirt Arboretum and post your pictures on the day.

Visit the green family events gazebo by the picnic area on the day to find out more.

Visitors can take part in a national draw to win one of 1,000 free parking vouchers for the day online at

For more information on what you can do at Westonbirt Arboretum visit

Notes to editor

  1. Find out about the International Year of Forests and the Forestry Commission’s national Forest Discovery Day events at

  2. Westonbirt, The National Arboretum is part of the Forestry Commission estate and is renowned worldwide for its tree and shrub collection. Home to the National Japanese Maple (Acer) collection, the National Arboretum covers 243 hectares (600 acres) and contains 16,000 specimens. Visitor numbers are 350,000 a year, with a membership of 26,000. Westonbirt Arboretum was established in the 1850s by wealthy landowner Robert Holford, and later developed by his son George Holford.  Unlike many arboreta, Westonbirt is laid out according to aesthetic appeal rather than scientific or geographical criteria. Westonbirt’s website is

  3. The Forestry Commission is the government department responsible in England for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of woods and forests and increasing their value to society and the environment. Forestry makes a real contribution to sustainable development, providing social and environmental benefits arising from planting and managing attractive, as well as productive, woodlands. For more visit

  4. The Friends of Westonbirt Arboretum was formed in 1985. The charity’s objects are to support the National Arboretum in promoting public understanding of the crucial role of trees to the environment and society. It is funded by membership receipts from 26,000 members, other fundraising, and the use of the Great Oak Hall for events and activities. More information at  

Media contact

Katrina Podlewska, Communications Manager, Westonbirt, The National Arboretum, on 01666 881 207 or email: