How the National Forest programme has progressed in 2022 and what is planned in 2023.
Completed actions from 2022
In 2022 we:
Launched the pilot of My Tree Our Forest.
The pilot, run with the Woodland Trust, gave away 5,000 trees to households across Wales.
Opened a second round of My Tree Our Forest.
The second round of My Tree Our Forest provided a further 295,000 free trees. This round also included the option to have a tree posted to or planted for people.
Launched the Eco schools tree project.
The Eco schools tree project ran in partnership with the Woodland Trust, Size of Wales and Keep Wales Tidy. It provided 100 schools the opportunity to plant small woodland in their grounds.
Launched the DataMap Wales interactive map.
The DataMap Wales interactive map allowed people to tell us where they would like to see more trees planted and woodlands created near their homes.
Appointed six Woodland Liaison Officers.
Woodland Liaison Officers will work with woodland sites to support them in gaining National Forest status.
Started a period of stakeholder engagement.
Holding seminars at the Hay festival, a Rural Wales event and the Royal Welsh Show.
Funded nine projects through the Woodland Investment Grant (TWIG) pilot.
Projects received financial support to create new woodlands or improve existing woodlands to meet the outcomes of the National Forest.
Launched and delivered two rounds of the Woodland Investment Grant.
The Woodland Investment Grant scheme was run with the National Lottery Heritage Fund. Grants helped to create, restore and enhance woodlands which have the potential to be part of the National Forest network in the future.
Set up Task and Finish working groups.
Working groups were set up to design the National Forest delivery model and status scheme.
Announced three sites to become Commemorative Woodlands.
The sites will be places to remember those who lost their lives to COVID-19 and the nation’s resilience throughout the pandemic.
Offered over 40 projects funding for equipment.
Through the Forestry Industries Recovery Scheme (FIRS) funding was provide for equipment.
Presented His Majesty the King with a commemorative tree.
The tree was planted by His Majesty, in the presence of the First Minister, at Erddig Hall. The tree was one of 5 Pontfadog Oak Saplings that were grown by Kew Gardens and gifted to the late Queen Elizabeth.
Proposed actions for 2023
In 2023 we plan to:
Complete the My Tree Our Forest campaign.
The next round of the My Tree Our Forest campaign will see hubs opening in February until March.
Fund more projects through the Woodland Investment Grant.
A further three rounds of grant funding through the Woodland Investment Grant scheme are planned for 2023.
Create more Tiny Forests.
In 2021 we funded the first 5 Tiny forests alongside Keep Wales Tidy.
Recognise more of the Welsh Government Woodland Estate as National Forest.
The first 14 National Forest sites were announced in autumn 2020.
Launch the National Forest Status scheme.
The scheme will be aimed at woodland owners and managers who would like to become part of the National Forest network.