Tree Charter Professional Steering Group Meeting

Written by Tir Coed / Thursday 19 January 2017

Our Vision

A future in which the many benefits of trees and woods are understood, treasured and fully realised in all areas of society.

Our Mission

To lead society in a celebration of the value of trees and woods, and in the creation of a charter that roots the beauty and utility of trees in public consciousness and at the heart of decision-making.

Trees, woods and forest livelihoods in the UK are facing more threats today than at any time in history, yet are consistently undervalued and overlooked in decision-making and practice in all areas of society. We risk losing trees from our lives and landscapes if we don’t act before it is too late.

Led by the Woodland Trust, more than 60 organisations are now involved in the steering group from across multiple sectors, joining forces to call for the Charter for Trees, Woods and People.

This most recent gathering took place at the amazing Winterbourne House and Gardens, an historic Edwardian Arts and Crafts style house set in 7 acres of gardens. Restored and bequeathed to the University of Birmingham, it has become the University’s Botanic Garden and supports the teaching of plant conservation.

Tir Coed has now attended three steering group meetings and is directly helping to build the charter, by feeding into numerous working groups to draft articles within the identified Principles and Themes. This process will continue until August, when the final Charter is to be prepared for the Grand launch.

The Charter will be launched at Lincoln Castle on 6 November 2017, the 8ooth anniversary of the historic 1217 Charter of the Forest which established rights of access and use for the Royal Forests in England.

The plan is that there will then be an annual celebration of the Tree Charter across the UK, at the start of National Tree Week, with a day of tree planting, tree dressing and story sharing. 

In the meantime, a period of public consultation, gathering ‘tree stories’ (anything that reflects how trees touch someone’s life) from people right across the UK, runs until the end of February 2017.

Tir Coed is in the process of collecting a few stories from participants on training courses to collate and submit; these might be – simple jottings, photos, poems, audio or video clips, tweets, postcards or prose.  Analysis of these stories will then help to inform the language used in each theme within the final charter.

If you want to add your voice to Tir Coed’s collection – perhaps you can tell us about a tree that is special to you; an experience you’ve had in a local woodland with Tir Coed or by yourself; your thoughts on how woods and trees make you feel or how important trees are to you and your community, then please get in touch with Angie ( by Fri 24 Feb or directly via