forestry and woodlands advisory group

Rory  held the second meeting of his forestry and woodlands advisory group last Friday 20th February, attended by representatives from public and private sector organisations, including the Forestry Commission, the Friends of the Lake District, Natural England, the University of Cumbria, the National Trust, and the processing industry.

The discussion covered the Independent Forestry Panel’s interim report, an overview of the processing sector from industry representatives, examples of community-led solutions to managing woodland being piloted by the National Trust, forestry education issues, and forestry within the context of land-management. The group will continue to meet in the lead up to the Independent Forestry Panel’s final report, which is expected to be presented to DEFRA in May 2012.

Rory said: “I feel very privileged indeed to have such a knowledgeable and thoughtful group representing a real cross-section of interests related to our forestry and woodlands, all feeding in to a comprehensive constituency response to the panel’s report. We had a valuable discussion today, covering an enormously varied selection of issues relating to our forests and woods: from the processing industry, to ecological and farming issues, to community benefits and the importance of preserving our landscape. I am confident that we will be able to formulate a powerful response to the report that will stand us in good stead ahead of any future policy changes suggested by Defra, and ensure that we get the best possible outcome for Penrith and the Border.”

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