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Woodland area by ownership

Forestry England, Forestry and Land Scotland, Natural Resources Wales and the Forest Service in Northern Ireland owned or managed 27% of the total woodland area in the UK in 2019 (Table 1.3). This proportion ranged from 16% of the woodland area in England to 55% in Northern Ireland.

Table 1.3 Area of woodland in the UK by ownership, 2015-2019

Ownership  England Wales Scotland Northern Ireland UK
thousand hectares     
FE/FLS/NRW/FS woodland1     
2015 215 117  478 62  871
2016 215 117 470 62 864
2017 214 117 469 62 863
2018 215 117 470 62 864
2019 215 117 469 62 863
Private sector woodland2     
2015 1091 189 954 50 2283
2016 1091 190 965 50 2295
2017 1092 191 968 50 2301
2018 1092 192 976 50 2310
2019 1093 192 988 51 2325
Total Woodland     
2015 1305 306 1432 112 3155
2016 1305 307 1435 112 3159
2017 1306 308 1438 112 3164
2018 1307 309 1446 113 3174
2019 1308 309 1457 113 3187

Source: Forestry Commission, Forestry England, Scottish Forestry, Forestry and Land Scotland, Natural Resources Wales, Forest Service, National Forest Inventory.

Notes:

1. FE: Forestry England, FLS: Forestry and Land Scotland, NRW: Natural Resources Wales, FS: Forest Service (Northern Ireland). NRW estimates only relate to woodland formerly owned/managed by FC Wales.

2. Private sector: all other woodland. Includes woodland previously owned/managed by the Countryside Council for Wales and the Environment Agency in Wales, other publicly owned woodland (e.g. owned by local authorities) and privately owned woodland.

3. Figures for England, Wales and Scotland are based on data obtained from the National Forest Inventory (NFI) and adjusted for new planting, but at present no adjustment is made for woodland recently converted to another land use. Further information on how the figures have been estimated is available in the Sources chapter.

4. Northern Ireland figures are obtained from the Northern Ireland Draft Woodland Register.

5. Areas as at 31 March.

Additional resources

Sources chapter: Woodland area

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