Posted on October 19, 2020 by

Join us online for our community woodland Gathering this year – a bonanza of talks, discussions and workshops from inspiring speakers, groups and practitioners.

On each day we will have a series of sessions exploring different topics. Join us for the whole day or drop in for the sessions that interest you!

Watch this space for updates on the programme.


DAY 1:  Wild woodland products

Thursday 12th November

Would you like to know more about the wild woodland products, from birch syrup to tree seeds? Or do you have your own wild woodland products for sale? Join us to hear from the experts, find out more about what the Dewis Gwyllt Project offers and to share your experiences of selling woodland goods.

11.00-11.30     Introduction to the conference.

Get the lowdown on this years conference with an introduction from Ian Thomas, who is an active member of the Llais y Goedwig board, and part of the community woodland group Welcome to Our Woods. This session will also equip you with the tools you need to fully participate in this years online gathering.

11.30-12.30     Wild Forest Products – what, why and how!

An exciting session looking at non-timber woodland products across Europe and in Wales. Find out about the development of products and supply chains for birch sap, wild garlic, elderflower and tree seeds.

13.3015.00     Wild Forest Products from Welsh Community Woods

Discover what community woodlands across Wales are making and selling and learn from an innovative project helping people living in Nature Parks in Austria to produce and sell collectively. There will be lively debates on creating a collective community woodland marketplace as well as certification and branding of Wild Woodland products.

Bring along something you’ve made (or send us  a photo in advance) and ideas for products you’d love to develop.

15.10-15.50     Afternoon Networking

Is there someone you want to catch up with, a project to discuss, a conversation to continue? We will host break out rooms for your use.

Clive Thomas and Ben Raskin from the Soil Association will be exploring collaboration, identify opportunity and remove barriers to increase the commercial potential for Welsh tree products in their break-out room ‘Building supply chains in Wales for farm woodland and agroforestry products’. Whether you are looking to better manage existing trees on your farm or to plant new ones, this session is for you.

16.0017.30     Know your woodland trees

Gain confidence in identifying trees during the winter months by getting to know their buds, bark, twigs and other signs. James Kendall, Bushcraft Instructor and creator of the Complete Tree ID Course, will teach you his tried and tested method for narrowing down what species you’re looking at when you’re out in the woods.

Discover how to identify ancient, veteran and notable trees, and how you can contribute to their conservation. With Tom Reed – Citizen Science Officer – Ancient Tree Inventory, Conservation and External Affairs, Woodland Trust.

DAY2:  Speaking up for community woodlands in Wales

Friday 13th November

At this time of transition, it is vital that we are prepared for change and in a position to speak up for community woodlands in Wales. This is your opportunity to catch up with and have your say on the latest policy developments. We will be showcasing the work of community woodland groups across Wales delivering for our woodlands, communities and meeting those Welsh Government goals.

11.0012.30    Policy and our woodlands

Exploring policy in Wales during these turbulent times and an opportunity to have your say on how Llais y Goedwig can support community woodlands and the woodland sector in Wales.

13.30-15.00    Responding to the Climate emergency

How community woodlands can contribute to tackling the climate emergency, woodland biodiversity, and resilience and the latest on National Forest.

With special guests Siân Stacey (Summit to Sea Project Development Officer and Extinction Rebellion activist), Adam Thorogood (Outreach Advisor, Coed Cadw – The Woodland Trust in Wales) and Erika Dawson-Davies (Head of the Welsh Government National Forest Programme).

We will be joined by two inspiring projects Coed y Bont and Skyline.

15.10-15.50    Afternoon Networking

Is there someone you want to catch up with, a project to discuss, a conversation to continue? We will host break out rooms for your use.

16.00-17.30    Policy in Practice

This session will help you better understand the two key pillars of WG woodland policy; The Wellbeing of Future Generations Act (WFGA) and Sustainable Management of Natural Resources (SMNR). We will explore ways they can help you to deliver your projects and activities, and their use in funding applications! It draws on the experience of community woodland groups in Wales identified in the report ‘Scoping the delivery of Welsh Government policy goals by Community Woodland Groups’, which we will draw upon during this session.

This session is led by Roger Davies from the community woodland group Golygfa Gwydyr.

We will be hearing from Melissa Dhillon all about Llyn Parc Mawr Community Woodland.

Plus we will be exploring how to promote policy in practice through the Tree Charter Principles – a presentation by Zara Holden (Tree Charter Lead, Woodland Trust) and Llinos Humphreys (Wales, Comms & Engagement Manager, Coed Cadw – The Woodland Trust in Wales

DAY3:  Tools for Community Woodland Groups

Saturday 14th November

Whether you’re part of an existing community woodland group, thinking of setting one up, or you have a woodland you’d like to involve more people in, this is the day for you. Grab a cuppa and join us for a fantastic day sharing skills and experience!

11-12.30          The woodland in your community

A close up look at our woodlands and what to do this management season, with experienced community woodlanders Sasha Ufnowska and Steve Chamberlain, two of our skilled Llais y Goedwig Development Officers.

Discover the meaning behind the name of your local woodland with Dr James January-McCann, a Welsh place names expert, in his presentation ‘Coed Whatnow?: A story in every place name’.

Meet our special guest Karin Eyben from the Garvagh People’s Forest, a community woodland in Northern Ireland.

12.40-13.20     Lunchtime Networking

Is there someone you want to catch up with, a project to discuss, a conversation to continue? We will host break out rooms for your use over lunchtime.

13:30-15:00    Community Woodlands and the pandemic

Explore how woodlands have been helping people throughout the pandemic with inspiring ideas of woodland activities that work even in a lockdown.

Chris Jackson will talk about using IRL (In Real Life) activities  during the pandemic as part of her role with Coed Lleol – Small Woods in Wales.  Anna Stickland  will demonstrate a simple craft project (making stars) and discuss how you can replicate this with your own groups, online or in person.  Anna is the project officer for Connecting People and Nature, a joint project between Coed Lleol and the Wildlife Trust, based in Merthyr.

Share your own stories of what happened in your woodland during lockdown, or how your community woodland coped.

15.10-15.50     Stories and music from the land

Gwilym Morus-Baird sings some Welsh songs and tells the folktale of Llyn Barfog, a story about the need for balance with nature.

16.00-17.00     The Llais y Goedwig Annual General Meeting

Get involved in the core work and future direction of Llais y Goedwig, the voice of community woodlands in Wales.


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