Public invited to lodge forestry estate management opinions

Forestry Commission Scotland is inviting anyone interested in the management of Scotland’s National Forest Estate (NFE) in the Galloway area to take part in a new consultation.

The three month consultation (launched 25th Feb 2014) seeks views on draft plans outlining how the Commission’s locally based teams around the country propose managing the estate over the next three years.

The priorities and management principles set out in the ten ‘District Strategic Plans’ (2014-2017) will subsequently guide the landscape-scale management plans for all of Scotland’s national forest estate.

A spokesperson for Forestry Commission Scotland, said: “This is the third generation of District Strategic Plan that we have produced for Galloway. We don’t envisage any radical changes to the land use balance on the Estate, but we do recognise there are opportunities for us to use our skills and expertise to ensure that the Estate delivers many more benefits to many more people.

“The National Forest Estate is a massive resource and provides the opportunity to combine sustainable woodland management and high-quality timber production with a wide range of other benefits. In Galloway these include working with partners over tourism initiatives such as Galloway Forest Dark Skies Park, the Biosphere and Arran, and continuing to develop woodland fringe as a key element of our wider Forest Habitat Network expansion.

“Getting the views of as many individuals, communities, businesses and organisations as possible is an important part of developing our approach for the next three years.”

The consultation is aimed at anyone who derives – or could potentially derive - some benefit from the national forest estate, including: individuals; community woodland groups; volunteer groups; minority groups; forestry, timber and recreation business partners; national and local government: and national and local interest groups.

The spokesperson added: “The District Strategic Plans show what the National Forest Estate delivers at the regional level, and how different parts of the estate contribute to the national picture.

“All of our woodlands are independently certified as sustainably managed under UK Woodland Assurance Scheme. In line with the aims of certification, we want to involve people in developing management proposals affecting the NFE.”

The consultation on the District Strategic Plans will run for three months. Links to the plans and consultation feedback forms can be accessed via

For further information, please email or write to: District Strategic Plans Consultation Co-ordinator, Forest Enterprise Scotland Head Office, 1 Highlander Way, Inverness Business Park, Inverness, IV2 7GB or telephone: 01463 232811