News & Events

eNews Current

This is Confor's May 2015 e-news, to keep you informed before our members receive Forestry and Timber News in June. 

Welcome to new and re-joining members  

A1 Arobrists, Cumbria
Hollamoor Farm, Devon
Rainbow Professional Ltd, East Riding of Yorkshire
Robin Dixon & Son Ltd, Stirlingshire
 The Utilities Exchange Ltd, Suffolk
Andrew Binmore, Surrey
Roger Cooper, Anglesey
Edward Wildermoth, Conwy 

Parties lack ambition for forestry and wood

The Westminster party manifestos demonstrate that our sector still has a way to go before there is proper recognition of what the sector does, and could deliver, for society. Read more here

Early bird bookings for woodland show
Following a great show in 2013, the biennial Confor Woodland Show returns on 10/11 September 2015. Sponsored by UPM Tilhill, Euroforest and the Forestry Commission, the show alternates with Confor's APF exhibition and provides an excellent platform for those working in the industry to meet, buy and sell. For the 2015 event, which will be even bigger than last time, more than 50% of the space has been taken, with many exhibitors booking early to secure stand space. There is still time to take advantage of the early bird discount, which ends on 31 May. Read more about the show.

For booking and sponsorship requests, please contact, Tel: 01502 725835  

APF 2016 open for business
We are delighted to announce that APF 2016 will be held on the 15/16/17 September 2016 and will return to the same site as last year.  APF 2014 was a huge success and there has been an unprecedented amount of requests from exhibitors wishing to re-book the same stand for 2016 as well as a lot of new companies looking to book space next time. Read more 

Confor in the media....
Watch Countryfile's woodlands special - with Stuart Goodall talking about tree disease and some great messages about the need to manage forests effectively and why we must place a proper value on wood.

And read this great article about a large new mixed-species forest taking shape in central Scotland - and the wide range of benefits it will bring.  

Eskaldemuir update reinforces economic argument for forestry
In 2013 Confor asked leading rural consultants SAC to undertake an economic and employment analysis of Eskdalemuir Forest and to compare this with an equivalent sized sheep hill farm. The research clearly showed that on the poorer ground, modern forestry provided a greater economic return than sheep farming, and supported very similar levels of employment. SAC have recently reviewed their work, and using 2014 figures for timber and sheep farming, have recorded an even stronger performance for forestry, but declining incomes for sheep farming, largely due to the reducing payments available under CAP for hill farming. The report is in its final review phase by industry experts, and a summary will soon be available on the Confor website. 

Biomass suppliers list risk assessment form
Confor has worked with UK biomass companies, regulators and auditors to produce a standardised UK Risk Based Regional Assessment for Producers and Producer-Traders of domestically produced biomass from UK forests and woodlands. Use of the template is not compulsory but it will simplify the compliance process for UK companies/individuals, and will reduce costs.
Open the document here 
Further advice and information can be found on the Biomass Suppliers List website here.  

Productive woodlands and water management
Following publication of a Forest Research/Confor report, Andrew Heald addressed the Institute of Fisheries Management 2015 conference. Read more here


England: Countryside Stewardship update
There is a new update on the Countryside Stewardship (CS) scheme on GOV.UK. The update covers the following: The relationship between CS scheme elements with current ES and EWGS agreements; the relationship between CS and the Basic Payment Scheme; the main elements of the scheme (Mid-tier, Higher-tier and capital grants); an update on the application periods in 2015.

Read the news alert here
Read the full update document here  

England: Coast to Capital Wood Processing Grant Programme
The Coast to Capital Wood Processing Grant Programme is an £800,000 initiative over the next two years to support enterprising timber businesses.  The programme will provide capital grants to small and medium sized businesses to part-fund projects that create jobs and strengthen and expand the operation of the wood processing industry in the area. The Expression of Interest and the Guidance notes are available on the Coast to Capital website

Wales: Glastir woodland restoration
The Welsh Government has announced that the first window for Expressions of Interest (EoI) for Glastir Woodland Restoration will open on 6 May 2015 and close at midnight on 5 June 2015.  Read more 

Wales: River Basin Management Plan
Confor recently submitted a response to the NRW consultation on river basin management plans for the West Wales, Dee and Severn catchment areas. Many thanks to members of the Confor Wales committee who help draft the response. The consultation closed on April 10th, NRW received more than a 100 responses and will review the feedback and publish a response document with comments and what will happen next on 10 July 2015 and on their website. 

Scotland: Remember to register for rural funding
Everyone submitting Single Application Forms (SAF) must register for the online Rural Payments and Services system by 15th May 2015 - including those submitting their SAF on paper. Register here  

Scotland: New appointment at the RSFS
The Royal Scottish Forestry Society has appointed a new contractor to deliver administrative services for the Society. The independent forester, George Moore has taken over these duties. George is a native of Co Fermanagh and now lives with his family in Kirkcudbright, to where he moved after a successful career in the Northern Bank. George replaces Jo Maynard who has carried out the role in a highly efficient manner for the last eighteen months. Jo is leaving the Borders to move with her husband and family to Abu Dhabi.  

Scotland: Reservoirs Act 2011 registration now open
The regulatory landscape for reservoir safety in Scotland is changing. Find out how the changes will affect you. In 2011, the Scottish Parliament passed the Reservoirs (Scotland) Act 2011 which, once fully enacted, will replace the current Reservoirs Act 1975. Responsibility for regulating reservoir safety will transfer from local authorities to SEPA.  There will be a phased transition to the 2011 Act and it will be necessary for reservoirs to be registered with us. Registration has now opened with a six month free registration period until 30 September 2015. We will take on our full regulatory function in 2016. It is the responsibility of the reservoir manager to register their reservoir(s) during the prescribed registration period. Failure to do so would mean missing the free registration period and could result in enforcement action.

For further information about the 2011 Act and its implementation click here or email the reservoir team (  


New President for ICF as Institute Enters New Phase of Growth
The Institute of Chartered Foresters (ICF) has announced its new President. David Henderson Howat FICFor has succeeded Prof Julian Evans OBE FICFor in the role at the 2015 ICF AGM, which took place on Wednesday, 22 April at The Angel Hotel in Cardiff. Read more  

Launch of new myForest website
A new version of myForest has been launched. Read more
MyForest provides online tools and resource for woodland management. 

Trailblazer apprenticeships: consultation open now
The forestry, arboriculture, horticulture and landscape industries are set to benefit from new apprenticeships designed to supply companies with new high quality talent. Visit the website to find out more: The consultation closes on 26 May, 2015. 

New research suggests climate change is affecting quality of our acorn crops
New research analysing data recorded by members of the public on the Woodland Trust Nature's Calendar survey suggests that climate change may be affecting the quality of acorn crops produced by oak trees across the UK. The research published in the new issue of British Wildlife suggests that warmer years lead to less synchronised flowering in oak trees and in turn lower quality acorn crops. Read more 

FSC launches new brand
The Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC) has launched a new global brand: Forests For All Forever. The new strapline - Forests For All Forever - reaffirms the FSC vision of saving the world's forests for future generations, while the visual identity, which includes the animals and people who live and interact in forests, reinforces the all-encompassing approach FSC takes to sustainable forest management. The new branding was developed based on a marketing survey that reached 9,000 participants from 11 different countries in 2013. An online toolkit containing the new branding assets has been created to help businesses promote their FSC certification.  

Over 80% of future deforestation confined to just 11 places
Eleven global hotspots will account for over 80 per cent of forest loss by 2030, according to research released by WWF last week. Up to 170 million hectares of forest could be lost between 2010 and 2030 in these "deforestation fronts" if current trends continue, according to findings in the latest WWF's Living Forests Report.

The fronts  - the Amazon, the Atlantic Forest and Gran Chaco, Borneo, the Cerrado, Choco-Darien, the Congo Basin, East Africa, Eastern Australia, Greater Mekong, New Guinea and Sumatra - contain some of the richest wildlife in the world, including endangered species such as orangutans and tigers. All are home to indigenous communities.  Read more 


Southwest England regional meeting
Controlling grey squirrels
18 May 2015
For details on venue, please contact

Scottish Land & Estates annual Spring Conference
Delivering Public Benefits from Private Land
19 May, Assembly Rooms, Edinburgh|
Read more

Practical grey squirrel control day
20 May 2015, Tamworth
Read more

Confor Woodland Show 2015
10-11 September 2015, Longleat Estate
Read more 

Southwest AGM
10 September 2015, at Confor Woodland Show, Longleat Estate
Read more 

South-west autumn meeting
07 October 2015, Fingle Woods - date for your diary
Read more  

Woodland Communications Day
13 October 2015, Horringer - date for your diary 
Read more

APF 2016
15 September 2016, Ragley Estate
Read more

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