Responsible use of our woods and exercising safely
In any other year, we would be encouraging as many people as possible to enjoy our amazing woods across the UK. But these are unprecedented times. Our country – and especially our NHS – needs us all to follow Government instructions.
We should be mindful of the continued need to socially distance and avoid creating crowds in public places. We must avoid putting unnecessary pressure on Trust staff and volunteers, emergency services and local communities. We need to keep ourselves and others safe.
Some of our car parks are closed, but our woods are open
We have seen the importance that our woods have played as places to exercise and how much they mean to people. All our woods are open and have been throughout the pandemic to local communities within walking distance. Some of our car parks, mainly at larger, more popular sites, are closed where a lack of social distancing may impact on surrounding communities and cause problems due to the volume of people driving to our sites.
Going forward we need to ensure that our sites are safe and ready for us to reopen those car parks and welcome back increased visitors. These decisions will be made on an individual site basis and will take into consideration the safety of doing so, the impact on local communities, and will continue to follow government advice.
When visiting our woods in England please:
- check for car park closure information. Most car parks are now open, but it's best to check our Visiting Woods pages before driving
- maintain social distancing by staying at least two metres away from other people
- follow recommended hygiene guidance
- take your litter home with you.
In Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland
In line with the advice from devolved governments our woods in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are open for local visitors only. Please ensure that you:
- do not drive to visit a wood or meet with people outside your household
- continue to maintain social distancing
- take any litter home with you.
19 May update: rules in Northern Ireland have been relaxed to allow more driving and meeting in small groups.
28 May update: people in Scotland can now travel locally for outdoor recreation and meet in small groups.
The Woodland Trust takes the threat posed by COVID-19 extremely seriously. Read our coronavirus safety statement.
Creative ways to get your nature fix
Even if you choose not to travel, we can still enjoy the good weather in our gardens and during exercise in local green spaces. And there are lots of other ways to feel close to trees, woods and wildlife, from visual and audio tours to kids’ crafts and quizzes.
Our teams have been working hard to pull together lots of fun and interesting activities to keep you and your family entertained as we all spend more time at home. We hope you enjoy them, and stay safe.
Thank you in advance for cooperating and for supporting trees and woods.
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