Developers & Planners

Around 22% of all the Forest created to date has come through the planning system. Initially this was through the restoration of former mineral workings and derelict land which have now become key destinations such as Conkers, Swadlincote Woodlands, Sence Valley and Hicks Lodge. The restoration of these sites and creation of the Forest has led to further residential, commercial and tourism development as more people choose to live, work and enjoy the National Forest.

All development within the Forest is expected to contribute towards the creation of the Forest. This expectation is contained within all Local Plans which cover the Forest and is reflected in paragraph 141 of the National Planning Policy Framework. This sets out that the National Forest Strategy is a material consideration in preparing development plans and deciding planning applications.

Local Plan policies require compliance with the National Forest Company’s Guide for Developers and Planners. This expects residential development over 0.5ha and commercial development over 1ha to include woodland planting and landscaping.

The Guide sets out:

  • How much woodland planting is required.
  • How this could be accommodated on-site or off-site, or
  • How this could be addressed by way of a commuted sum, and
  • How to incorporate a National Forest character.

Examples of best practice are also listed along with details of organisations which may be able to design or undertake woodland planting and maintain or adopt completed greenspace.

Incorporating trees and woodland within new development has been shown to increase sales values and speed. National Forest planting can help address sustainable drainage and public open space requirements, encourages active travel, sequestrates carbon, improves air quality, reduces flood risk and benefits health and wellbeing. In addition, incorporating National Forest planting in a scheme roots the development into the wider National Forest and demonstrates how new development can form part of this growing Forest.

The National Forest Company engage in all aspects of the planning process from new policy documents to planning applications. We would welcome the opportunity to discuss your scheme with you prior to submission to ensure the appropriate National Forest planting is incorporated.

For more information and details on how we can help please contact: 

Philip Metcalfe 
The National Forest Company, Bath Yard, Moira, Swadlincote, Derbyshire, DE12 6BA
01283 551211


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