Trees, Woodlands and Forests. A guide for developers and planners Northwest Regional Forestry Framework
Street Field

Policy context

Both at a strategic and at a legislative level, trees and woodlands are recognised as delivering environmental, social and economic benefits within society. The Government’s long-term vision for England’s woodland resource is ‘A Strategy for Trees, Woodlands and Forests’ (DEFRA 2007). This includes a challenge to increase tree cover, but also demands that the socio-economic potential of trees is realised. This approach is reflected in the regional strategy ‘The Agenda for Growth: the Regional Forestry Framework for the Northwest’ (2005). In here, action is set to increase the amount and quality of tree cover. However, it also sets a challenge to better integrate trees across the health, economic development, education, energy and tourism sectors.

A wide range of national and regional planning policy also exists to protect existing trees, and to actively encourage new planting. In line with national strategy, these policies integrate the wider concerns of climate change, health and well being, cultural and social contribution and biodiversity. As well as promoting positive action, policy also carefully protects existing tree stocks, both through tree preservation orders and felling licences.