South Yorkshire Forest Partnership
1 Union St
Many of the environmental regeneration projects we are involved with are being implemented by reclamation companies and the industrial land owners in South Yorkshire, such as the collieries and steel plants, while the aim of the ‘Creating a setting for investment’ project is specifically to provide information that will help the region attract inward investment from the wider business community. On another level we work with businesses ranging from PR companies to printers to help them meet their corporate social responsibilities through the business tree-sponsorship scheme, ‘Branch out’.
The Partnership has been the driving force behind the development of a local timber industry, creating new jobs and involving local people. This includes developing sustainable markets for timber and timber products such as furniture, wood structures and wood fuel. As a result many previously under utilised woodlands in South Yorkshire are being brought under active management and now contribute to the regional economy. The Wood & Woodlands team have also provided funding for many woodland and timber based businesses through the Objective 1 Forestry Resources Grant scheme. These grants have paid for new planting schemes and machinery as well as product or site development.
Businesses can get involved and the South Yorkshire Forest Partnership can help you plan a project to improve the land around where you work. There are also opportunities for businesses to financially support projects throughout the area.
One of the first, and one of the biggest restoration sites to benefit from a Forestry Resources Grant. A. Ogden & Sons, owners of the 126 hectare Silverwood coal tip in Rotherham undertook the restoration after a coal washing programme on the site. The site is being restored to a mixture of native woodland, amenity grassland and ponds and seasonal wetland areas.
The restoration and contouring on the site fits well with the surrounding landscape, reversing the many years of despoilation and linking to the scenic landscapes to the north and west of the site as well as providing a valuable recreational resource for the people of the area through a series of paths linking with existing footpaths and new housing developments around the site.
A Forestry Resource Grant has provided significant support for the development of a centre for local woodland industries at Ecclesall Woods Sawmill. The vision for the Sheffield City Council owned site includes the development of a newly opened retail outlet selling locally sourced and produced woodland products from firewood, woodchip and Christmas Trees to fine furniture, sculptures and timber-framed structures. A number of local timber based businesses have taken residence at the Sawmill and provision of further purpose built workshops for woodcrafts people and furniture makers is planned, alongside an education, training and interpretation programme enabling people to learn about the value of our local woods and how they can help provide for a more sustainable future. All the businesses and crafts people involved with the Sawmill are members of the Working Woodlands Trust, a collective of local timber workers who are committed to sustainable working practices. Please visit www.workingwoodlands.info to find out more.
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