Learning Westonbirt

Changes to school and educational group visits

To keep everyone safe, we have introduced some changes to school and educational group visits.

Your health and safety is our top priority, and as you would expect we have introduced a few changes:

Young woman uses phone

Please book in advance

We are asking all groups to book in advance. This is for guided and self-led groups. Search for your local forest site and contact the learning team who will be able to provide support to help you plan your forest visit.

Limited group sizes

Visits to our sites will be limited to one class bubble / 30 children plus accompanying adults. This is to help to reduce congestion in the busy areas and to allow groups to maintain social distancing. Groups sizes may increase at stage 4 (21st June) of the government’s roadmap out of lockdown.

Children looking at forest floor
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Site facilities

We are following the governments covid-19 guidance and safety advice for all visitors such as operating and cleaning procedures and one-way systems. You may find that some services and facilities, such as cafes and play areas, have reduced capacity.

Our website will give you the latest information about parking, trails, what learning opportunities are on offer and what current facilities and accessibility provision is at each forest location.

With over 1500 sites to choose from no two sites are the same. Search for your local site and speak to the local learning team to discover what guided or self-guided options are currently available.

How you can help

  • Book in advance - speak to your local forest site and book your group visit in advance, this includes self-led groups. This will help us to stagger groups and social distancing around the site.
  • When on site, maintain your two-metre social distancing. Our sites are very busy with the general public so be prepared to alter your plans at short notice and avoid the busy spots.
  • Wear your masks in appropriate areas / in all indoor areas and where social distancing of 2m cannot be maintained.
  • Be prepared to turn back if parking is limited or we have had to close the site.
  • Bring hand gel and maintain hand hygiene throughout the visit.
  • Be aware of social distancing and interaction with members of the public at all times – our sites are very busy so please be considerate. Take care not to block paths or huddle in large groups in busy areas and be prepared to turn back if a play area or other facility is already busy and social distancing cannot be maintained.
  • Ensure you have contingency plans in event of a group member displaying Covid-19 symptoms during your visit.

Can’t visit a forest right now?

Then don’t worry – we have lots of ideas for you to do in your classroom, school grounds or local green space.

Our free downloadable resources can help bring the sights and sounds of the forest to your classroom.

Want to know more?

Subscribe to our teacher’s newsletter for regular email updates, and check out our other blogs for teachers for more ideas of how to bring the forest and its benefits into your classroom.

Keep exploring

Child looking at bug through magnifying glass, near pink flowers
Find free resources to download, or look for a school trip in a forest.
Sherwood Pines Forest Activity Bag
Blog
21 April 2021
For far too long, the quiet murmur of excited school children exploring the forests has been missing from the forests. Now, as lockdown restrictions are eased we are very excited to welcome you back to the nation’s forests.
Boy looking at leaf learning
PDF download
10 September 2020
All our forests are located within the temperate forest biome and are perfect places to learn about native woodlands and how they contrast to tropical rain forests.
Woman in denim sitting on bench in the forest, writing in a book
Blog
29 October 2020
Half-term may be coming to a close but there are many ways to keep the sights, smells, tranquillity and adventures of the forest alive in your classroom. From guided yoga adventures for students, to downloadable autumn activities - we've got you covered as you prepare for the second half of term at school.