Forestry Proposals – very good or very bad

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  • Forestry Proposals – very good or very bad
  • Heather Bash
    Member

    *Wonders if this will embolden Wee Eck to have another go in Scotland*

    TooTall
    Member

    From the Telegraph today, so TJ, Fred etc can turn off now:

    Huge sell off of Britains forests

    Caroline Spelman, the Environment Secretary, is expected to announce plans within days to dispose of about half of the 748,000 hectares of woodland overseen by the Forestry Commission by 2020.

    The controversial decision will pave the way for a huge expansion in the number of Center Parcs-style holiday villages, golf courses, adventure sites and commercial logging operations throughout Britain as land is sold to private companies.

    Lots of unknowns, but save your pennies and we’ll have the STW forest!

    mansonsoul
    Member

    Oh no. I hate Britain so much, it really is crap in so many ways. And it seems that everyday a whole new way to be crap is discovered, exploited and put in place ready to shaft everyone but the rich in time for the new financial year.

    retro83
    Member

    Allan MacKenzie, secretary of the Forestry Commission Trade Unions, said: “We will oppose any land sale. Once we’ve sold it, it never comes back.

    “Once it is sold restrictions are placed on the land which means the public don’t get the same access to the land and facilities that are provided by the public forest estate.

    “The current system means a vast amount of people can enjoy forests and feel ownership of them. It is an integral part of society.”

    Sounds about right.

    Junkyard
    Member

    A source close to the department said: “We are looking to energise our forests by bringing in fresh ideas and investment, and by putting conservation in the hands of local communities.”

    I for one think it is really nice of them to sell something we all own back to business to make money out of it us to look after it rather than let the govt look after it on behalf of the owners – the people of the country. Better to be in the hands of people to exploit it. Just think how much LLandegla will cost now

    Well I never voted for the pricks.

    Premier Icon mintimperial
    Subscriber

    Great, more golf courses. I can’t find the reference right now, but I recall reading somewhere that a mere 1% of England is golf course. Obviously we need more.

    kaesae
    Member

    They will do what politicians always do, they will sell sh1t and make life that little bit worse for everyone! poor.

    We have fools in charge, they have led us to begin a new millenium with a global shite mare!

    We have talentless, useless, visionless leaders. It doesn’t matter what political group is in charge. Politics doesn’t work!

    It’s just a career stepping stone, as tony blare has very kindly demonstrated.

    Wake up! with fools in charge of the world our species has no future, do you think that is a good or bad thing?

    Junkyard
    Member

    go kaeasae I almost agree with you.
    Think Dave would do alright without politics what with being a millionairre and marrying one

    kaesae
    Member

    Dave was born to that money, so was his other half.

    Does he have more money than branson, what about gates? he and his other have had a flying head start in life, are they two of the richest people in the world?

    There are people with great ability and capacity, the only problem junk yard is that people like you make them think, to hell with this! it’s every one for themselves!

    Rather than doing what they do to better the lot of humanity, they become power hungry and lose sight of the fact, that humanities fate is the destiny of us all!

    andybach
    Member

    The Commission forests are no more likley to be turned into Centre Parks or Golf Courses then they are now. The FC are the biggest developers of onshore wind farms in the UK.

    The Commission was set up to grow a strategic reserve of timber, and to reduce our dependence on imported timber, particulalry during WW1 when we were almost entirely dependent on imported pit props in order to mine coal.

    90 ish years on we still import 85% of our timber and the UK is one of the least wooded countries in Europe.

    Please explain to me why we need a nationalised forest industry? Why not have some nationalised farms/coal mines/electricity generating – because arguably food and power security are far more important than timber.

    Yes – the FC have done some good work developing Bike Centres and WIldlife areas – but arguably these “uncommercial activities” were pursued instead of commercial timber – precisely to prevent them from being sold off under Thatcher.

    The Govt does not need to own large forests of commercial spruce, they should consider keeping the forest tht deliver the greatest public benefit and concentrate the spend on them.

    The FC have been quitely selling off forests for nearly 20 years and the vast majority are sold off ensuring that full public access is maintained. No commercial tree felling can be undertaken in the UK without the formal permission of the FC anyway and 90% of the commercial timber in the UK is certified under FSC and is independently audited for sustainability.

    Sorry rant over.

    richcc
    Member

    Proposal sounds bad news to me. Another piece of what we own being sold off so someone can charge us to use it and get richer off it.

    I’m with this fella.

    Allan MacKenzie, secretary of the Forestry Commission Trade Unions, said: “We will oppose any land sale. Once we’ve sold it, it never comes back.
    “Once it is sold restrictions are placed on the land which means the public don’t get the same access to the land and facilities that are provided by the public forest estate.
    “The current system means a vast amount of people can enjoy forests and feel ownership of them. It is an integral part of society.”

    kaesae
    Member

    When has change that the government implemented ever been good news for the poor?

    @andybach all good points that bring a bit of balance to the thread, I agree that it would not be wise to simply sell it all off or make golf courses etc out of it.

    We will simply need to see what happens, perhaps local riders could manage and govern the forests, or even better local MTB riders, walkers and everyone else that uses the forests/ land could come up with idea’s and innitiatives to buy them?

    I presume that the Kinder Scout mass trespass will amount to nothing soon then. Thanks London.

    Kaesae

    Its about the freedom to ROAM

    Junkyard
    Member

    the only problem junk yard is that people like you make them think, to hell with this! it’s every one for themselves!

    You dont read many of the politics threads do you? I am a left wing bleeding heart lentil munching Guradian [intentional] reading tree hugging union rep with a love of social justice and redistributive taxation. I dont have a lot in common with dave and his chums. Politically and socislly I come from a different world now back OT

    When has change that the government implemented ever been good news for the poor

    Minimum wage NHS free education, benefits and SICK PAY – for the people running a sideline ebay business infirm etc plenty of stuff helps the poor

    kaesae – that sounds like a utopian dream.

    Call me a cynic but, realistically, if land is sold off it will be into the hands of the few. This would seem likely to lead to lower levels of access for the rest of us.

    I’m left wondering what else we’ll have left to sell off as a nation?

    Tinners
    Member

    The biggest enemy is apathy. I’ve encountered this sort of thing in other walks of life. It may be that the story has no substance, but it wouldn’t be the first time that a government – keen for cash – puts out a proposal to see what sort of response it generates. The government, if they are looking at it, will want a solution with as many winners as possible. If the land generates income from logging or wind farms and retains a right to public access, then I think that it’s unlikely to change. If, on the other hand, there are commercial interests elsewhere and we remain silent, or a minority voice, then it could be at risk. It is very much in our interest to watch how this develops and take an active role in opposing any plans that jeopardise our enjoyment of the land. They won’t be too bothered about upsetting a handful of mountain bikers if they can generate income that allows investment in other, more politically favourable, areas such as NHS investment or keeping schools open. It may be unlikely, but I don’t think that anything’s safe in today’s climate and we need to make our voice heard and generate support elsewhere if it ever looks as if it’s going to happen.

    Premier Icon epicyclo
    Subscriber

    We could sell all our national resources to the filthy rich, and then when we have all their money, we can have a revolution, nationalise the lot, and make the filthy rich poor. 🙂

    Tinners….

    [hear, hear] clap, clap, clap [hear, hear]

    andybach
    Member

    There is no need to “sell it off” – just lease it out – the State retains the freehold of the land – the private or 3rd sector deliver the actual management plan over a set say 20yr period.

    The managment plan could be drawn up by the FC, with local stakeholder engagement.

    Anyone who thinks the forests will be over run by development – should attempt to build something or fell trees without getting a phone call from the Local Authority within days.

    The argument here is, a much bigger one, what is the role of the State in 2010, and do we need/want the State to provide recreational facilities, conservation areas, a strategic reserve of timber to support the sawmilling industry.

    Any organisation should understand what it is good at, and arguably more importantly what it is bad at, the state is not good at being commercial and taking commercial risks. So keep the country parks style forests with high levels of public access, but manage them with the Local Council, get the local Wildlife Trusts to manage your conservation areas, and get the commercial sector to manage your Spruce plantations.

    Do it all on long leases, reduce your overheads massively and continue to deliver the majority of hte public benefit.

    yunki
    Member

    The biggest enemy is apathy

    right then tinners… I was driving past Fairmile in Devon the other day.. scene of a lengthy anti road protest in the early 90s.. people living in trees… chained to immovable objects in underground tunnels etc.. a fully functioning medieval village sprang up there for a couple of years.. I became quite emotional remembering the determination of those folk.. they lost in the end of course.. and I was belting along a fine new stretch of the A30 to prove it..

    Are you suggesting that we grow dreadlocks.. learn some woodcraft and take to the trees like Robin Hoods Merry Men..?

    If so count me right in…

    kaesae
    Member

    No Junkyard I don’t waste my time with hand bag swinging or arguing for the sake of self important indulgence.

    I spend my time trying to simply avoid the idiocy of our modern (souless/pointless) way of life.

    And of course avoiding fools! who I am illergic too!

    If the land is sold to the rich we will lose access to it! thanks for clearing that up. However the land will more than likely be sold, if the right proposal was put forward for ways to make the land profitable and keep it in the hand of the public, there is a good chance that organized bodies of riders could own or control it.

    Throughout europe there a MTB parks that bring in good revenues, this could also be done in this country, where ever possible.

    Once one park is set up a proportion of the funds could go to setting up more parks, with purchased land. If organised riders could do lots of different fund raising activities anbd a lot to get more people our riding.

    CCTV camera’s could be set up to observe wild life, people interested in viewing what the camera’s view could pay a small amount either to simply observe or to control the camera’s, competitions for MTBing and other sports could be broadcast over the internet and rather than the money going into the banks of the rich as it does with TV the money or revenues could go towards keeping the forrests in our control.

    There are any number of innitiatives that could be put into place, but that would take vision, drive and for people to actually get involved, rather than agruing about who is right.

    I’m off back to selling my possesions.

    Can this country get any worse?

    YES IT CAN!

    kaesae
    Member

    I think that everyone is being distracted by this that and the next thing.

    Here’s how I see the situation, we that is to say our species have access to a great amount of resources, as we speak those resources are bing controlled by a sellect few.

    In effect the flow of those resources is being controlled and redirected so that a small elite can have power. The real trick! that is to say the long con, is to find a way to get control of the resources back!

    You can talk all you want, you can protest all you want, you can argue! you do all the useless idiocy you feel is justified.

    But if you want to make real change, you will need to realize that the power to do that is only possible with resources and getting a hold of those resources and having them be managed and governed by the right people.

    Should be what all of us with vision, are focused on!

    tinribz
    Member

    The argument here is, a much bigger one, what is the role of the State in 2010, and do we need/want the State to provide recreational facilities, conservation areas, a strategic reserve of timber to support the sawmilling industry.

    Obviously yes.

    If the gov can’t be trusted with national assets then we should do it ourselves. Start a not for profit company called ‘The Britsh People Ltd’, we all chip in and buy the land once and for all and look after it properly, by which I mean unrestricted access for all.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    to shaft everyone but the rich

    What makes you think that private forestry land is going to be locked away and inaccessible for everyone? They would probably attach T&Cs to any sale I reckon. Plus lots of woodland is probably more economically productive with the trees left on it too.

    And btw did you know Llandegla is on private land?

    Sue_W
    Member

    Does this just apply to FC holdings in England? I don’t think it applies to FC holdings in Wales and Scotland. Although the Telegraph refers to ‘Britain’s forests’, all to often ‘Britain’ is used when only talking about England. The FC has a complex structure, including FC Wales and Scotland – which are funded by the Welsh and Scottish governments. The article refers to the cuts to Defra’s funding which does not apply to Wales and Scotland.

    This doesn’t mean that a similar approach won’t be taken in Wales or Scotlandas the devolved governments have just been hit with cuts to their budgets. I think a big concern is going to be the massive cut in public sector grants that fund all types of ‘recreation’ (even those that most people think of as ‘natural). Llandegla forest is actually in private ownership (Tilhill forestry I think), but has recieved public grants to fund the development of mtb trails. It is these grants that are likely to stop, with a negative impact on recreation regardless of who owns the forests.

    And yes, I do think the public sector should be resourced to provde for, and manage, conservation and recreation

    MrNutt
    Member

    FFS last one off this stinking island light the fires please

    kaesae
    Member

    We need to be organized and start to sort the shit out, the government are not a force for anything but disaster and hardship.

    If they sell of the forests and land, who do you think they will sell them too?

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    It does make me wonder about the valuation of the land. How much would (oh, lets just say frinstance) the FC forests at Innerleithen- Traquair and Elibank is it- sell for on Ebay?

    Here is an idea. Why not leave the forests alone and allow mother nature to look after them?

    noteeth
    Member

    The Daily Failograph comments section is raging, although there appears to be some confusion between commercial forestry operations and ye olde woodland glades.

    Pretty sinister, nonetheless – perhaps they are hoping to reintroduce Royal Deer Parks, Norman conquest style, with the death penalty for trespassing commoners mountain bikers.

    TandemJeremy
    Member

    Well Cameron only has jurisdiction over Englands fordests not UK wide. Teh proposal in Scotland from Wee Eck was for a lease system

    Theis

    We are looking to energise our forests by bringing in fresh ideas and investment, and by putting conservation in the hands of local communities.”

    stinks. How is selling the forests to commercial concerns doing this? No community will be able to afford to by its local woodland

    Dreadful idea

    druidh
    Member

    TandemJeremy – Member
    No community will be able to afford to by its local woodland

    Laggan Forest Trust
    Cree valley
    Wooplaw

    …and dozens of others…..

    TandemJeremy
    Member

    Where did they get the dosh tho druidh? will that money be available now?

    CountZero
    Member

    MrNutt, don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out…

    GEDA
    Member

    Commercial enterprise does not do well under government ownership due to many things. One is the inability to borrow due to it being part of the national debt. The tories make it sound wonderful that people can be empowered with à small state and less support. Unfortunetly it is à bit hard for any other party to tell the truth which is most people are too stupid and gullible to do the right thing and they would rather spend all their money on beer fags and tvs than on bettering themselves as that is what the media and private companies have told them is good for them. I never have been able to work out why our elective representatives are not allowed to tell us what to think but commercial companies who only want to make a profit are?

    GEDA
    Member

    Oh and in some cases the fc is not the land owner. Sweden is covered in commercial forest and it is à lot better managed than the uk. F’ed up my local trails though when i went for à ride today. I am pretty sure the statistic about woodland cover is well out of date now though and the uk now has an above average amount of tree cover.

    NikNak7890
    Member

    The Tories yet again selling off anything they can to Their mates the private sector every time they gain power!

    andybach
    Member

    press releaseFrom a 2009 FC press release promoting a proposal to massively increase new planting

    This would mean increasing tree planting by 200 per cent on current levels. It would bring woodland cover in the UK from its current 12 per cent of the land area to 16 per cent, still well below the European average of 37 per cent.

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