More connected forests

Sence Valley from the air

Joining up woodlands across England

Connecting woodland for wildlife to thrive and people to enjoy.

We're creating new woodlands, making existing woodlands bigger and providing corridors to join up important habitats.

Better connected woodland supports a range of wildlife and helps us build a healthier society, providing people a space to connect with nature and each other.

Marsh fritillary butterfly displaying wings with grass in the background

Connecting wildlife 

Better connected woodlands help trees and wildlife cope with a changing climate. Animals can move home and seeds can spread further, allowing populations to shift their range to more suitable conditions. 

Woodlands are a refuge for wildlife under pressure from a changing climate. Extreme weather events like drought, fire and floods are increasing, as well as the threat of new pests and diseases. Well-connected woodlands support more wildlife and can help them better recover from the challenges that they face. 

Connecting people 

The nation’s forests are a living treasure for all, deeply connected to people’s lives. Spending time in woods and forests has significant benefits for our health and wellbeingThe nation's forests are for everyone, and we want to connect more people to nature.

Connecting up woods and forests across the country means more people can enjoy them. We work with local communities, partners and experts when creating new areas of woodland to make sure they provide the best balance for all.

Family in the forest looking up at a tree
Purple flowers within green forest and field landscape

Bigger, better, more connected

Sence Valley woodland creation project

In 1998 we planted 98,000 trees in Sence Valley, Leicestershire transforming the former coal mine into a haven for wildlife and people. To celebrate the centenary of the Forestry Commission in 2019, we bought a further 48 hectares next to the site and created a new woodland. 100,000 trees were planted, connecting existing woods and supporting a sustainable forest for the future. 

Along with 17 different species of tree, the new centenary woodland includes areas of wildflower meadow and ponds, increasing wildlife habitat, along with a network of footpaths to allow more people to explore and enjoy the forest. 

Aerial view of forest in autumn colour with a river running through it
The nation’s forests have a critical role to play in the UK’s transition to a high nature, low carbon and healthy society. We're ensuring forests will thrive and be enjoyed for generations to come.