The Save Sherwood Forest campaign, officially launched in February 2011 following a packed public meeting in Nottingham, joins similar campaigns across the country protecting the nation’s forests. While the national campaign has caused the government to pause, this campaign will continue until the threat to sell off the public’s forests is completely withdrawn from the Public Bodies Bill.
The group believes the sell-off will restrict public access and cause environmental damage, and has reacted with concern to reports from Conservative MPs who are claiming that it is a “myth” that Sherwood Forest will be sold off. The MPs, in an attempt to justify their policy, say Sherwood Forest is privately owned and run by the sort of charitable trust the government hopes will manage all our Heritage Forests.
But, while Sherwood Forest is a complex web of woodland and forest, a large part is held and operated by the Forestry Commission on behalf of the people. A response to a Freedom of Information Act request shows that, for example, 88% of Sherwood Pines is owned by the Forestry Commission. Sherwood Pines Forest Park covers an area of 3,300 acres and is the largest single tract of forest open to the public in the East Midlands.
Save Sherwood Forest are holding a public meeting at the Friends Meeting House, Clarendon Street, Nottingham on Thursday 17February from 7pm – 9pm to arrange the details of an event in support of keeping Sherwood Forest in public ownership.
For a report on the public meeting see: http://nottssos.org.uk/2011/01/30/sherwood-forest-is-our-forest-report-from-a-well-attended-meeting-in-nottingham-on-27th-jan-2011.
For more information about the national Save Our Forests campaign see http://38degrees.org.uk/page/s/save-our-forests.
Save Sherwood Forest are encouraging local people to make their views known at the public drop-in session about the consultation process at Sherwood Pines on Sunday 13 March from 11am – 2.30pm.
Download the PDF of this press release here: SSF_022011_campaignlaunch
This story appeared here in the Nottingham Post.