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News releases - 2016

Complete our forest machinery survey and help improve forestry services

Forest Research is calling on all forest harvesting machinery owners and operators to complete its forest machinery census - and provide valuable data about the current state of the harvesting resource in England, Scotland and Wales.

A Christmas delivery from Kielder to London

On Friday 25 November, haulage contractors Robert and Lewis Scott set off to London with a very special delivery from the Forestry Commission for the Palace of Westminster. They were delivering three Christmas trees which included a 50ft Sika Spruce that was being put next to Big Ben, a 25ft tree for Westminster Hall, and a 20ft tree for the Speakers State rooms.

St Helen’s Picnic Site Consultation

Forestry Commission England is currently holding a consultation to gather feedback and ideas on the sustainable management of St Helen's Picnic Site in Thetford Forest.

Forestry Commission England announce the winner of Jerwood Open Forest 2016

Artist Keith Harrison has been announced as the winner of Jerwood Open Forest 2016 and will be awarded a major £30,000 commission to realise his project Joyride at Cannock Chase Forest in autumn 2017.

Olly Murs announces Forest Live shows as part of huge 2017 Summer Tour

Following on from his spring arena tour, Olly Murs, one of British music’s biggest stars, announces his biggest headline shows yet; 20 outdoor dates across the UK including two dates as part of Forest Live, the summer concert series organised by the Forestry Commission.

Follow the elves’ journey and experience a magical Christmas with Forestry Commission England

Escape the shops, wrap up warm, enjoy the Christmassy scent of pine trees, and get into the festive spirit this year in England’s national woods and forests.

Apprentices spark Forest of Dean facelift

A group of 19 apprentices from Western Power Distribution (WPD) has taken part in a project with Forestry Commission England to help improve community green spaces in the Forest of Dean.

Santa Hacks for a perfect Christmas from Forestry Commission England

As experts in trees Santa has given Forestry Commission England’s Christmas trees his 100% approval. He has also shared with us his tips and craft ideas to make this Christmas the best yet! From getting the tree back from the forest to making the perfect decorations, here is a list of Santa Hacks for the perfect Christmas.

Mixed fortunes for New Forest bloodsuckers

Hallowe’en is traditionally a time when creepy creatures thrive as darkness descends but for bloodsuckers in the New Forest life is not so rosy.


With three jaws each containing 100 sharp teeth and the ability to consume up to 10 times their body weight in blood, it is easy to see how the leech has earned its spine-chilling reputation.

Julia Grant appointed Forestry Commissioner

Her Majesty The Queen has approved the appointment of Julia Grant as a Forestry Commissioner for England.

Colour yourself happy this autumn half-term in England’s National Woods and Forests

In a recent survey carried out by Forestry Commission England a staggering 96% of people said that beautiful autumn colours improve their mood and to celebrate nature’s most colourful season Forestry Commission England has created a ‘Colour me Happy’ trail to help you discover the sights, smells, sounds and tastes of autumn, along with lots of fun activities for families this half-term.

Rick Astley announces Forest Live gigs

Rick Astley is the first artist to announce dates for 2017 as part of Forest Live, the summer concert series promoted by the Forestry Commission where acts perform in spectacular woodland locations around the country.

Celebrating the Centenary of the Cyril Hart Arboretum

On Saturday 17th September the family and friends of Cyril Hart celebrated this most auspicious event joining together with Forestry Commission staff past and present, the Forest of Dean Verderers, past Deputy Surveyors, the Arboretum Volunteers and many others who have contributed to the arboretum in many different ways.

Exciting promenade theatre experience comes to Bedgebury for Halloween

If you’re looking for a completely new theatrical experience then the Forestry Commission’s Bedgebury Pinetum and Forest, near Goudhurst, Kent, will be hosting an interactive theatre show with a difference this Halloween.

Colour me happy – the chemistry of autumn colours

In a recent survey carried out by Forestry Commission England a staggering 96% of people said that beautiful autumn colours improve their mood, but why do the leaves change colour? What makes a maple leaf turn fiery red, a beech become golden or an ironwood transform through a rainbow of colours to deep plum purple?

Taster day for over 55s at Haldon Forest Park

Calling all over 55s, the Forestry Commission’s Haldon Forest Park is working with Age UK to host a taster day aimed at people aged 55 and over. On 21 September, between 10am and 4pm, there will be a range of low cost or free taster activities for people in this age group to try out and the café will be offering some delicious titbits taste.