Forestry Commission logo
  • Learning in the Forest Of Dean

Learning in the Forest of Dean

Light falling onto an open area of woodland

The Forest of Dean is a great place to bring your class or group at any time of year. 


Pre-school groups will enjoy collecting leaves and other forest treasures or building stick-houses for their teddy bears.  Primary school children can explore the trails and discover more about the forest and its wildlife.  The Forest provides good opportunities for secondary school groups to carry out GCSE or A-level fieldwork projects.

Learning Delivery Provider

Wildforesters run outdoor forest adventure based school sessions.  These are linked into the national curriculum and can be delivered at Beechenhurst or Wenchford. tel: 07870227889  

Rachel Shilston delivers Creative Detectives.  A fun, interactive workshop perfect for schools to learn more about the Forest of Dean and embark on some creative activities.  

Planning your self-led visit

If you are planning a self-led visit, please email the following details to

  • Name of school, name of party leader and email contact
  • Date and time of visit
  • Age and number of children
  • Site to be visited and brief details of the activities you are planning (eg Sculpture Trail walk)

Beechenhurst has been awarded a CLOtC Site Provider Award. The Council for Learning Outside the Classroom (CLOtC) is the national voice for learning outside the classroom. This award recognises organisations which actively welcome schools onto their site/s for self-led visits and ensure that the sites and any other services provided meet the needs of schools. For more information, please visit

When planning your self-led visit, please remember that you (the party leader) are responsible for:

  • contacting the Forestry Commission at least 2 weeks in advance to advise of your visit
  • paying any visit charges: coach parking £10 on all pay and display sites, a booking fee (£50 + VAT) if 50 students or over are visiting, an additional toilet clean charge if over 100 students are visiting.
  • the behaviour and well-being of the children in the group
  • risk assessments for the journey to and from the site and all the activities you are planning (we strongly recommend that you carry out a pre-visit site check)
  • taking all litter home with you
  • ensuring that all group members are appropriately dressed (we recommend long trousers, strong shoes or boots, warm waterproof coats, hats, gloves etc)

Coach Parking:

This should be paid at the ticket machine on site, please bring enough coins as the machine does not take credit cards.  If you are bringing three or more coaches, you can pay for your coach tickets in advance by phoning the Forestry Commission on 0300 0674800.

Activity Ideas

If you want help planning activities for your self-led visit to the Forest, take a look at our learning resources pages or visit the Forest Education Initiative website.  Alternatively, visit the Woodland Trust's Nature Detectives website for hundreds of free downloadable activity sheets





Last updated: 17th March 2017

What's of interest

Biblins Youth Camp Site is secluded in the depths of the Wye Valley Gorge.

It is a very special place and one of the best locations in southern Britain for young people to enjoy outdoor pursuits in spectacular scenery.

For more information contact the site manager on 01600 890850 or

Related pages

England's Woods and Forests are cared for by Forest Enterprise England, an agency of the Forestry Commission.