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Festive activities at Whinlatter Forest

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visitors choosing Christmas trees at Whinlatter Forest

Enjoy an escape from the high street this Christmas and buy a real tree from England’s only true mountain forest at the Forestry Commission’s Whinlatter Forest in the Lake District.

There’ll be mountains of UK grown real Christmas trees, as well as a range of festive activities for all the family. The Forestry Commission only sell trees that are grown in the UK and in a well-managed way, with more trees planted every year than are harvested.

A special self-led children’s trail will take kids on an adventure in amongst the trees and tracks in a search for Santa’s reindeer.

There will be Christmas crafts in the visitor centre on 3 and 4 December, and also on the 4th there will be a tree planting session to mark National Tree Week. There will be a felt workshop on the 10 December to make your own felt Christmas decorations.

On 11 December, to mark International Mountain Day, there will be a day of celebrations, including lantern making, family craft activities and guided wildlife walks, before the day culminates in an atmospheric lantern story walk at dusk.

Sally Burchall from the Forestry Commission says:

“Not only is Whinlatter the perfect place to source your Christmas tree this year – where better than this mountain forest with its Alpine setting – it’s also a great place for visitors of all ages to get crafty and provides a greener shopping environment than the high street.”

Tree sales begin on the 30 November and the sales centre is open daily until 19 December (or until stocks last), from 10am – 4pm weekdays and 10am – 5pm at weekends.

Siskin’s Café in the forest will be serving a delicious selection of hot and cold food and drink including seasonal favourites.

The Forestry Commission is also running a competition to celebrate real Christmas trees and asking people to post their Christmas tree photos to the Forestry Commission's Flickr site - The best dressed tree will win two tickets to a forest concert of the winner's choice.

Rising to 790 metres above sea level Whinlatter Forest offers spectacular views of the Lake District and into Scotland. Visitors can explore miles of walking trails and mountain bike routes through the stunning mountain forest as well as the new Whinlatter WildPlay trail for children.

For more information about Christmas events, tree sales and activities at Whinlatter Forest this season call the Whinlatter Forest Visitor Centre on 017687 78469 and select the shop option, or visit

Whinlatter Visitor Centre and Forest is situated to the west of Bassenthwaite, between Keswick and Cockermouth. Follow the B5292 Whinlatter Pass Road.

Notes to editors:

  1. The Forestry Commission only sell trees that are grown in the UK and in a well-managed way.  More trees are planted every year than are harvested. The Forestry Commission also guarantees a quality product, including an FSC option, sold to you by an helpful and expert team of staff.

  2. The Forestry Commission is the largest provider of countryside recreation in Britain, with responsibility for more than one million hectares (2.4 million acres) of forest, woodlands and open countryside. Its North-West England Forest District covers the Lake District in Cumbria, the Forest of Bowland in Lancashire, Merseyside, Greater Manchester and Cheshire. The forests are managed for conservation, wildlife, landscape and recreation as well as providing a valuable source of timber.

Media contact:
Sarah Bruce on 01229 862016.