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Community woodland groups are growing, and there are now over 650 groups in England, Scotland and Wales. The rise is the result of both social pressure and changes in policy. Groups are keen to learn from each other’s experiences, and policy stakeholders seek evidence of the effectiveness of past and current policy. While some experiences have been documented, many others have not, and evidence is available in a variety of forms that are difficult to compare. There is therefore a need for a consistent approach to describing the dimensions of a community woodland model that supports the documentation of case studies. This will provide the basis for a robust and comparable body of evidence, to enable comparisons between case studies, and between different points in time within a single case study. This rigorous approach to description will also help with evaluation and impact assessment of different approaches to community-delivered forestry. For some uses, such as national counts of community woodland groups, it will be important to carefully define a ‘community woodland group’; for others it is more important to leave the definition open, so that the method can document case studies of interest to a wide range of users. With the publication of this method, we invite fellow researchers and practitioners to join us in producing a robust shared evidence base.


PDF, 1.51 MB

Publication type
Research Note
Publication owner
Forestry Commission