Cumbria Coastal Community Forest

A Forest For the Community

Announced in November 2021, Defra approved Cumbria’s proposal for a new Cumbria Coastal Community Forest.

Thousands of trees will be planted over the next five years which will create up to 150 hectares of woodland. These woodlands and trees will provide direct and real benefits for people living within these communities through the development of new tree planting and woodland creation. It will offer opportunities for decarbonisation and enhance the county’s natural capital, making Cumbria a more attractive place to live and work.

Unlike traditional forests, community forests aren't geographically restricted to one place. Instead, they are spread out across a mix of community woodland, private woodland, on-street, urban woodland, wooded habitat corridors and hedgerows. By growing trees where they are most needed, corridors of woodlands will be created along the west coast of Cumbria to better connect coastal communities to nature.

This will help people enjoy the benefits of being close to trees and woodlands, enhance biodiversity and provide resilience to help reduce the effects of climate change on local communities through carbon capture, and nature-based solutions, mitigating flooding and drought.

The development of the Cumbria Community Forest bid has been led by Cumbria County Council, The National Trust and Cumbria Woodlands, in close partnership with other local councils including Barrow Borough Council, Copeland Borough Council and Allerdale Borough Council.

Find out more about Englands Community Forests here

Creating The Community Forest

The Cumbria Coastal Community Forest has funding available for woodland creation and tree planting. Whether you are a school, local business, community group or individual, If you own land or are responsible for land that may be suitable then please use the Woodland Advisory Service to get in touch.

Our free Woodland Advisory Service can provide guidance on whether the land is suitable for funding from the Community Forest, or advise on any of the other funding that may be available. 

Funding from the Community Forest can be used for a wide range of tree planting projects from small scale to large scale woodland creation, hedgerows and multi-use woodlands.

Partners and Organisations

The Cumbria Coastal Community Forest provides opportunities for businesses, organisations and community groups to get involved and support this hugely exciting project.

Whether you are a local employer looking for ways to engage with environmental projects, or a community group with volunteers who can help, the Community Forest will benefit from your input.

We also have opportunities to support us through match-funding which can dramatically boost what we can achieve with the Community Forest.

If you feel you are able to support the project or want more information then contact us and speak with one of the team.

Case Study-

St Benedicts and Mayfield Schools, Whitehaven

  • Over 500 trees were planted at the two sites over two days
  • School children and staff planted the trees and learned about the process from the Cumbria Woodlands team
  • Morgan Sindall were able to help both with funding and their staff came to assist with panting and also learn about the benefits of tree planting

"For me personally, since moving onto our new school site, I've been trying to work with both staff and students to try and ensure school life is sustainable. There were a number of trees cut down when the new school was constructed and we've been hoping to do some more planting on-site ever since we moved in January 2019."

"Due to covid, lots of our plans had to be put on hold. It was so rewarding for both staff and students to be involved in the tree planting last week. We learn about sustainability and the importance of deciduous Woodlands in our school Geography lessons, so it was a fantastic opportunity to work outside the classroom in this way."

"Thanks to Cumbria Woodland and Morgan Sindall for making this all possible."

Julia Lee, St Benedict's School

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