Saturday, 19 August 2017

What's the difference?

When we were planning the Forests and Woodlands questionnaire (you can read the results in the March newsletter at this link), we started to talk about the difference between a "woodland" and a "forest". I didn't get into that in the first survey, it would have become too long - so the question remains open.
One of our survey respondents did touch on this. When asked about their first thought regarding forests and woodlands, they wrote:
"Forests aren't woodlands. After that it's trees (which don't necessarily occur in forests)"

If you work in an occupation that involves you with forests, you will probably know that there is a legal classification of what comprises a "forest", for the purposes of land use in planning. A forest is a legally defined area under management - which may or may not include any trees or vegetation!

If you try to look up the definition of a forest, you will come up with a number of other answers too, with can vary depending on which country you are in.

If, like me, you don't work in planning or a forest related occupation, you may have a different perception of what is "woodland" and what is "forest". When you close your eyes and imagine a forest, what do you see? And how is that different from what you imagine as a woodland? Rather than official definitions, I'd be interested to know what we feel is the difference between a woodland and a forest.

I know what I think, and I will reveal that at a later date - but not now, for fear of biasing your own opinion! But I think there is more to it than just the size of an area of trees. I'm not sure this merits another survey, but I would love to hear your thoughts:

In your imagination, what's the difference between a forest and a woodland?

Please email us a couple of sentences to  I will collate any responses at a later date and share them with you.

Thanks for following.

This post was originally posted as a newsletter on 31 March 2017 by Jo Dacombe.

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