Sources: Woodland area and planting
Data on woodland area in the UK are derived from the following sources:
- Forestry Commission and Forest Service administrative records of FC/ FS woodland areas;
- National Inventory of Woodland and Trees (GB);
- Statistics on new planting of non-FC woodlands in Great Britain;
- Forestry Commission administrative records of disposals of woodland (GB) and
- Forest Service estimates of non-FS woodland area in Northern Ireland.
Data on certified woodland areas are obtained from the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and follow-up enquiries with certificate holders.
Data are woodland areas in each country (England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland) by ownership (FC/ FS, non-FC/ FS) and type of woodland (conifer, broadleaf).
For certified woodland areas, data collected from FSC are certified woodland areas for each certificate holder. Follow-up enquiries are made with larger certificate holders to provide a country breakdown.
For FC/ FS woodlands, data are obtained annually from administrative systems. Forest Service also provide estimates of non-FS woodland on an annual basis.
For non-FC woodlands in Great Britain, annual estimates of woodland areas are based on the most recent inventory of woodlands - currently the 1995-99 National Inventory of Woodland and Trees (NIWT). The figures obtained from NIWT are then rolled forward for each country by adding statistics for new planting of non-FC woodland and disposals of FC woodland. No account is taken of woodland converted to another land-use, nor for changes in composition at restocking, as there are no sufficiently reliable data sources for these topics.
For certified woodland area, as all FC/ FS woodlands are certified, the total woodland area (from administrative records) is used, rather than the area provided on the certificates.
The statistics on woodland area may be revised between the provisional figures published in the First Release 'Woodland Area, Planting and Restocking' and the final data published in Forestry Facts & Figures and Forestry Statistics, to take account of revisions to administrative data. They are not normally revised after final figures are published except when a new National Inventory is published, previous years may be revised.
For certified woodland area, the figures are not normally revised.
Statistics reported for each year are published at a country level (England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland).
Time series data, providing figures on certified woodland area are available from the Woodland Area and Planting Statistics web page. The time series data feature breakdowns by country and by ownership (FC/ FS, non-FC/ FS).