The stands, in places are dark and sullenly impressive, gathering me into silent contemplation, a connection to root and soil and a way to breathe and smell. Taking only what is needed, leaving hopeful offerings into the darkness for tomorrow. For tomorrow may be silent.

The UK was the third largest net importer (imports less exports) of forest products in 2014, behind China and Japan — Forestry Statistics 2016

“Its rather a mysterious sort of wood

Don’t you think so Beth?”

“Well, the trees are rather thick, but they seem about the same as any others”

“They don’t quite”

“The noise the leaves make is different, listen,

It’s almost as if they were really talking to one another”

“Whispering secrets - real secrets, that we just can’t understand”


The Enchanted Wood, Enid Blyton, 1939

Only about 6 per cent. of the area of the

British Isles is woodland, and the greatest

density of woodland is in the north and east of

Scotland and the south-eastern counties of

England. Home grown timber provides only a small proportion of our national requirements and the remainder has to be imported. The Forestry Commission is planning to increase our woodland area by 50 per cent. over the next fifty years, when, it is estimated it will

provide about one-fifth of the timber we need.

The Geography of the British Isles, 1968

The key points from the latest releases are:

The woodland area in the United Kingdom in 2016 is 3.16 million hectares: 1.35 million hectares (43%) are independently certified as sustainably managed.

Six thousand hectares of new woodland were created in the UK in 2015-16.

10.8 million green tonnes of UK roundwood (softwood and hardwood) were delivered to primary wood processors and others in 2015, representing a 6% decrease from the previous year.

Wood products imported into the UK in 2015 were valued at £7.5 billion and included 6.3 million cubic metres of sawnwood, 3.2 million cubic metres of wood-based panels, 6.5 million tonnes of wood pellets and 5.9 million tonnes of paper.

A total of 238 projects were registered under the Woodland Carbon Code at 30 June 2016, covering an area of 16.0 thousand hectares of woodland and projected to sequester 5.8 million tonnes of carbon dioxide.

Over one half of the UK population had visited woodland in the last few years.

The Annual Business Survey reported average employment in 2014 of 16 thousand in forestry and 27 thousand in primary wood processing.

Gross Value added (GVA) in primary wood processing (sawmilling, panels and pulp & paper) was £1.39 billion in the UK in 2014. GVA in forestry was £0.58 billion.

The UK was the third largest net importer (imports less exports) of forest products in 2014, behind China and Japan.

Coverage: United Kingdom

Geographical breakdown: England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.


Forestry Statistics 2016

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