Forestry Commission


The 2018 Festival Bowland programme has now come to an end. Almost 70 events took place between February and the middle of October covering everything from moorland bird walks, bat nights and wildflower days to clog dancing, star gazing and stone carving. 

Many thanks to all those who organised or led events as part of the programme and who are, even now, planning events for next year's Festival calendar!

23rd October 2018

As part of the Leeds-Morecambe Community Rail Partnership's Dementia-friendly Rail Project, the National Landscape Unit worked with the CRP and the Forestry Commission to develop a dementia-friendly route at Gisburn Forest & Stocks.  A new leaflet for the existing Birch Hills Trail Tramper route was produced, including additional information about the heritage and wildlife along the trail.  The Forestry Commission made and installed several new seats and a picnic bench along the length of the route, along with a number additonal waymarker posts, making the route easier to follow and also more accessible for visitors who are unable to walk long distances.

A group from Dementia-Friendly Keighley, along with members of the CRP and Northern, launched the route on Monday 4th September. They were accompanied by a representative from BBC Radio 5 Live who interviewed and filmed the participants as they followed the walk. The resulting film was then aired on the BBC.

4th September 2018

Plans have been produced for Greater Butterfly orchid, Globeflower and Juniper.

All three plans are underway.

6th January 2016

  • Discover Bowland Guide 2015, published and launched 11th Feb at Gibbon Bridge, supported by BEx businesses
  • Gisburn Forest Bike Trails leaflet reprinted - March 2015 - supported by BEx businesses & Forestry Commission
  • Bowland by Bike reprinted - March 2015
17th April 2015

Bowland Revealed is an exciting arts offer designed to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Forest of Bowland National Landscape. A partnership project between LCC Arts Development Service, the National Landscape and Ribble Valley Borough Council, the programme has received funding from Arts Council England, via their Grants for the Arts strand, and from the partner organisations.

Landmarks (managed by Mid Pennine Arts) were a series of four ambitious, temporary outdoor visual arts commissions inspired by the Bowland landscape and sited in popular locations around the National Landscape.  On show from September to late December 2014 (Sun Catcher until October 2015) the project attracted attention from BBC's Countryfile programme.

50 Years in the Making (Managed by Green Close) ran from June to December 2014 and engaged local residents, visitors, schools and artists through a series of workshops and exhibitions.

Bowland Explorers' Club (Managed by Mid Pennine Arts) began in May 2015 offering a programme of creative participation which particularly targets communities living around the National Landscape.  The Explorers' Club has visited Cloudspotting (Gisburn Forest Hub), Blackburn Heritage Festival, Burnley Canal Festival; Hopeful & Glorious Art Fair (Lytham), Garstang Victorian Christmas Fair and Brockholes Visitor Centre (x2) In partnership with Wild Rumpus, the club organised a final celebration event in March 2016, again at Gisburn Forest, which attracted over 250 participants.  Branches of the club also worked with In Situ in Brierfield, with Ground Up, linked to the Burnley Mechanics At Home group, and with a group in Bolton.

A Bowland Revealed discussion/evaluation workshop is planned for late April 2016.

6th May 2014 to 30th April 2016

Supported with advice re design and funding opportunities.  Ongoing.

1st April 2014

Working group re-established in April 2014.

Will meet approx twice per year and direct biodiversity delivery through the development of annual delivery plans, made up from work across the delivery group.

1st April 2014

Separate Festival Bowland events brochure produced for 2014.

Festival Bowland programme for 2015 included as part of Discover Bowland guide.

2016 programme currently under development and will be included as part of discovery guide again.

1st January 2014


1.3 Habitats
Action Targets and Timescales Partners
1.3H Conserve and enhance native woodland through appropriate management (e.g. small-scale, traditional coppice techniques), aiming to maintain good structure and maximise biodiversity
Hold woodland management seminar/field visit
Secure funding for at least 1 pilot woodfuel economy project
1.3G Support the creation of new native woodland in appropriate sites and the expansion of existing woodlands to reduce habitat fragmentation
Utilise woodland opportunities mapping to guide future woodland creation and expansion
2016 onwards
2.4 Sustainable Tourism
Action Targets and Timescales Partners
2.4I Support opportunities to develop and promote 'Gisburn Forest and Stocks' as a destination for cycling, walking and riding
New branding and visitor information rolled out for Gisburn Forest and Stocks
2014 onwards
Investigate potential to divert bus route to link with Gisburn Forest Hub
3.2 Public Rights of Way and Access Land
Action Targets and Timescales Partners
3.1D Continue to identify and facilitate the development of strategic routes linking neighbouring urban areas and other visitor destinations to the National Landscape, with priority given to: l extension Lune Valley multi-use route l extensions to North Lancashire bridleway l Settle (Pennine Bridleway) to Gisburn Forest link
Seek inclusion of priority strategic routes in review of LCC RoWIP
Continue landowner negotiations and development of route for Settle to Gisburn Forest link
3.3 Visitor Management
Action Targets and Timescales Partners
3.3A Continue to facilitate meetings between relevant partners regarding access and visitor management for popular visitor sites (e.g. Upper Hodder Management Group, Pendle Hill Advisory Group)
At least 1 meeting per year of Management Groups
3.3B Develop and share best practice amongst countryside site managers and management groups (e.g. Friends groups)to consider development of visitor facilities, minimising impact on landscape and biodiversity and refreshing signage and interpretation with National Landscape 'messages', wherever possible
Investigate demand for establishing National Landscape Countryside Site Managers group
Establish a list of National Landscape 'honeypot' sites including details of site management arrangements