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NEWS RELEASE No: 1601724 JULY 2013

Forestry Commission creates survey for LGBT community

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The Forestry Commission has partnered with diversity charity Stonewall to survey lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender visitors to woods and forests across the UK.

The survey aims to get opinions on access, relevance and enjoyment of Forestry Commission sites. The results will contribute towards a wider picture of how people from various sectors of society think about and use our woods and forests.

David Williamson, Forestry Commission Head of Recreation and Public Affairs commented:

“We at the Forestry Commission pride ourselves on being part of an organisation that aims to be as diverse as possible.

“The results of this survey will help us to make sure our woodlands are enjoyable, welcoming and relevant for all.” 

To date, little evidence exists in relation to the customer experience of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community who visit woods and forests. The results from the survey will help to identify services that are currently used by the LGBT community, as well as potential barriers that may prevent forest visits.

The survey will also collect views on the Forestry Commission’s employment practices and recruitment.

Rhondda Salmond, Diversity Manager, Forestry Commission, says:

“Our success as an employer and a provider of first-class services to the public depends on our commitment to equality and diversity. We constantly strive to make sure everyone feels welcome and that people from all parts of the community will not only want to use our forests and facilities, but will also want to work with us.”

To take part in the survey, visit  and click on the link. The survey will be online until 20 September 2013 and every response will be treated in confidence.

For more information, please visit

Notes to Editors:

1. The Forestry Commission is the government department responsible in England and Scotland 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 further information: Rhondda Salmond 0131 314 6267