Independent advisers have told the government that England’s publicly owned forest estate should not be sold off.
The decision comes after more than half-a-million protesters signed an online petition against the idea.
In their final report, the panel decided that woodlands could help ‘drive a sustainable economic revival’.
The Rt Rev Jones, head of the Independent Forestry Panel, spoke of a need to change attitudes to woodland:
‘We need a new culture of thinking and acting around wood and woodlands…a new way of valuing and managing the natural and social capital of our woodland resource.’
Hilary Allison, Policy Director of the Woodland Trust, was satisfied with the result:
‘It is vital that the Government now works towards ensuring the estate is effectively resourced and developed to deliver more benefits for more people.’