The Community Woodlands Association was established in 2003 by Scotland’s community woodland groups to help them achieve their aspirations and potential: we provide advice, assistance and information, facilitate networking and training, and represent and promote community woodlands to the wider world.
There are around 200 community woodland groups in Scotland, from the highlands and islands to the heart of our major cities; collectively they own and manage tens of thousands of hectares of forest, ranging from ancient semi-native woodlands to large conifer plantations and recent regeneration on urban brownfield sites.
Our support helps them to connect people with nature and build social capital in communities across Scotland, to manage their woodlands to meet local needs, and to deliver a broad range of social, environmental and economic public benefits.
Scotland’s community woodlands are:
- providing wide-ranging opportunities for outdoor recreation, from informal paths and ’all ability’ facilities to mountain bike trails and orienteering courses;
- restoring native woodlands, and improving woodland habitats, to conserve and enhance Scotland’s biodiversity and help mitigate climate change;
- increasing the economic value of forestry to local communities, creating jobs, developing local processing and building markets for forest products;
- developing local supply chains and markets for woodfuel, to help reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and support sustainable forest management;
- involving all sections of the community in planning and decision-making, and ensuring that the benefits of community woodlands are available to all.