Orkney Islands Council
Working together for a better Orkney

Related Sites

Orkney Woodland Group

The Orkney Woodland Group is comprised of representatives from Orkney Islands Council, Scottish Natural Heritage [SNH], Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, Forestry Commission Scotland, Orkney Field Club, and the Hoy Trust.

Links to the respective websites can be found at Related Sites on the left of this web page.

Orkney Woodland Group’s vision is:

‘To enhance and enrich our environment and heritage by conserving our existing woodlands and extending woodland habitats, creating attractive landscapes for people and wildlife.’

The key objectives of the group are:

  1. To create more opportunities for people of all abilities to enjoy trees by providing woodland recreation in towns and in the countryside.
  2. To raise public awareness of trees and woodlands and encourage involvement of all age-groups in a range of woodland-related learning activities.
  3. To develop and improve local skills in tree growing, planting and management.
  4. To work with local people, schools and community groups to conserve, enhance and expand Orkney’s native woodlands using stock of local native provenance.
  5. To work with local people, community groups and volunteers to develop a woodland resource in the countryside, using stock of local native provenance, plus other species where appropriate.
  6. To work with local communities to protect, enhance, and extend, where appropriate, existing amenity, policy and conifer plantations.
  7. To protect and enhance trees in towns and villages and encourage appropriate new planting.
  8. To promote the sustainable use and management of trees and woodlands.
  9. To involve the local community in developing research and monitoring. projects that will help manage and enhance Orkney’s trees and woodlands.

Orkney Woodland Project

The Orkney Woodland Group acted as the steering group for the ‘Orkney Woodland Project’. For almost 15 years  the group supported woodland projects which have enabled the planting of new native woodlands; improved management of existing woods; involvement of schools, community groups and the general public in woodland projects; plus environmental awareness raising, interpretation and education. Over this time 228 folk have obtained and taken up grants through the work of the project and, as a result,  a total of 127 hectares of new woodland has been created or brought into management. At a very rough estimate, at least 5000 people have been advised by the project, with many planting trees without grants. Recent Woodland Trust funding has also provided suitable trees for numerous school and community projects.

Further information about the work of the Orkney Woodland Project can be found on their pages of the Orkney Communities website - see under Related Sites

Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) is from now on the main port of call for free advice on woodland creation and management, and can be contacted on 01856 875302.