A wide range of grants are available in the UK to support and encourage land owners and communities to manage existing woodland, and to plant more trees.
The generally accepted view is that woodland/forest cover in the UK is low (12%), certainly when compared with other European countries. Various bodies have an interest in expanding forest cover in the UK and are prepared to offer financial and other inducements to encourage this.
The benefits of creating a sustainable source of timber and at the same time mitigation against the possible damaging effects of climate change are compelling, even before other advantages such as health and amenity for local populations are considered.
Below are details of just some of the bodies offering grants to encourage planting and management of woodland in the UK. Anyone interested would be advised to approach each body to assess suitability for their individual application.
The Forestry Commission offer and administer the widest range of grants, with each of the home nations having their own particular schemes. Please see below:
Forestry Commission England:
Forestry Commission Scotland:
Forestry Commission Wales:
National Forest - East Midlands Special Forest
The National Forest covers a region of 200 square miles of the English Midlands, including parts of Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Staffordshire.
The aim of the National Forest is to re-afforest this particularly sparsely covered area by linking the two ancient Forests of Charnwood on its Eastern fringe with Needwood Forest to its West, covering many old mining sites.
To find out about grants specific to this region go to: http://www.nationalforest.org/woodlandcreation/
Woodlands Birds Project
Woodland bird populations have been in steady decline since the 1970’s, with 33 species falling by 20% over the last 25 years.
Together with the RSPB, Natural England and other key Regional Partners, the Forestry Commission administered 'Woodland Birds Project' is aiming to reverse this decline. Financial support is available to landowners and managers to improve woodland habitat for birds – currently only available in the Midlands region.
To find out more about this grant go to: http://www.forestry.gov.uk/eastmidswoodlandbirds
Founded in 1972, the Woodland Trust is the UK's leading woodland conservation charity and relies on the support of its many members and other supporters to continue its work.
The Woodland Trust wants to see native woodand cover doubled in the UK over the next 20 years and are working to achieve this end by planting more woods on their own land and offering incentives to other landowners to do the same.
Grants and special initiatives are available on a national basis and for more information go to:http://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/en/why-woods-matter/creation/freewoods/Pages/freewoods.aspx
The Tree Council
The Tree Council has two grants programmes, the ‘Trees for Schools' and ‘Community Trees' funds. These are available for schools and community groups within the UK who are able to show that children under the age of 16 will be actively engaged in the planting projects.
The Tree Council's National Tree Week (this year from 25 November to 6 December) is the focus for these projects.
To find out more go to: http://www.treecouncil.org.uk/?q=grants