Jul 03 2019

New Life for Durham Woods

A four year project that aims to create a flourishing woodland culture in Co Durham is set to go ahead thanks to National Lottery Heritage Fund support.

NLHF approved the Durham Woodland Revival project, which will cost more than £800k over four years and will see ancient woods brought into positive management, new trees and hedges planted, and communities re-connected with their local woods in an area centred on Durham City.

The Trust has been working with lead organisation Durham County Council, to develop the project, and we will be their main delivery partners. This builds on a longstanding relationship with the council which has seen more than 150ha of new native woodland planted in recent years through leases to the Woodland Trust. It is part of a fantastic legacy of work from Gary Haley, former site manager for the north-east of England.

Durham County Council’s existing woodland estate will be brought into better management through the project, and this will be used to engage neighbouring woodland owners and catalyse active management of their sites, including restoration of ancient woodland.

A number of landowners have also signed up for support through the project to plant and restore hedgerows, small copses and in-field trees. Existing woodland community groups will be given further support to manage their woods, and a number of new groups initiated, with the aim of creating a self-sustaining network of community woodland groups and a flourishing woodland culture. Volunteers will be recruited to research woodland history and archaeology, providing information to help landowners decide how to manage their woods.

Other partners include Northwoods, Forestry Commission, and Beamish Museum, who will host forestry apprenticeships. The Wear Rivers Trust are also a partners and will be engaging landowners in tree planting for natural flood management.


Paul Bunton- Engagement and Communications Officer, North

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