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NEWS RELEASE No: 162369 APRIL 2014

Forestry Commission England announces results of national tender for learning providers

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Learning in woodland

Forestry Commission England has announced that it will be working in partnership with three organisations to deliver its national learning strategy at nine locations across England.

SFA, a community interest company formed by two renowned environmental education providers – Schola Foris and Archimedes – will offer learning opportunities and events for schools, families and groups at Cardinham Forest in Cornwall, Dean Forest Park in Gloucestershire, Bedgebury Forest in Kent, West Walk in Hampshire, Chambers Farm Wood in Lincolnshire, Hicks Lodge in Leicestershire and Dalby Forest in North Yorkshire.

In addition, a local company called A Touch of the Wild will expand and develop the learning business that they have built at Haldon Forest, Exeter over the past few years, in order to offer a wider variety of opportunities to a range of learners.

Another existing provider, OASES, was successful in acquiring a longer term licence for Hamsterley Forest in County Durham and will continue to work closely with local schools, as well as developing additional learning activities for families and other groups.

Rachel Giles, Forestry Commission England’s National Learning Manager said:

“Our vision is to enable everyone, everywhere to have access to learning opportunities on the Public Forest Estate. Working in partnership with other organisations and environmental education providers at some of our key locations is an exciting way to achieve this.

“We are also developing other new and innovative ways to learn, including downloadable activity sheets and lesson plans, and the self-led ‘Ranger in a Box’ scheme. We hope that collectively this work will continue to excite and intrigue people of all ages about trees and forests and their importance for timber, people and wildlife.”

Licences will be signed on or before 1 May 2014. Visit to find out more about learning in Forestry Commission England woods and forests.

Notes to Editor

1. The Forestry Commission is the government department responsible in England for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of woods and forests and increasing their value to society and the environment. Further information can be found at

2. Contacts for the licensees:
OASES - – Joanne Appleby
ATOTW - – Hannah Standen
SFA - – Alex Douglas-Kane

Media Contact: Katrina Podlewska, Forestry Commission Senior PR and Partnerships Officer: or 0117 9066030