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Kielder Forest: past, present and future

7pm. Great North Museum: Hancock.

Kielder Forest is the largest planted forest in northern Europe. This talk will describe its origins as a strategic timber reserve after the First World War, its importance for timber production, its development as a visitor destination (with Kielder Water and Forest Park this year receiving Visit England’s award of Best Tourism Experience in England), and its maturation into a haven for many species of wildlife. The talk will describe the process of transformation from the original post-war plantation into a diverse-structured forest, capable of delivering the multiple outputs required of it in future, and will consider the potential changes in governance of the public forest estate in future.

Graham Gill is Forest Manager for the Forestry Commission’s forests in the north of England, including Kielder Forest where he has been the manager for the last 19 years.