Decision details

The creation of Derbyshire’s Heartwood Community Forest

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Infrastructure and Environment

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: Yes


England’s Community Forests and the Government would like the Council to lead the development of a new Community Forest in Derbyshire. This report explains the context to this offer and the long-term strategic opportunities it presents to the Council and Derbyshire. The intention is that “Derbyshire’s Heartwood Community Forest” will be established from April 2025 as a new public, private and community sector partnership entity that brings trees and people together to create healthy, liveable and economically rewarding places.


That the Cabinet Member:


a)  Approves the acceptance of the invitation of England’s Community Forests and the Government to lead the development of Derbyshire’s Heartwood Community Forest.

b)   Approves the acceptance of grant award of £0.050m revenue funding in 2023-24 from the Government’s Trees for Climate woodland creation programme to support the development of Derbyshire’s Heartwood Community Forest.

c)   Delegates authority to the Director of Legal and Democratic Services to finalise the terms of the grant funding agreement and thereafter to enter into it.


Reasons for the decision:

To enable the Council to respond positively to the Government’s

 invitation for it to  lead the development of Derbyshire’s Heartwood

 Community Forest.


Alternative options considered:

Do not accept the Government’s invitation to develop Derbyshire’s Heartwood Community Forest.  This has been rejected as doing so would mean that the Council would miss a unique strategic opportunity to fulfil a national leadership role in convening action that secures a step-change in social, economic and environmental benefit.  This accords with the Council’s leadership of such matters at a county and East Midlands scale. For this reason this alternative option is not recommended.


Publication date: 09/11/2023

Date of decision: 08/11/2023

Effective from: 17/11/2023

Accompanying Documents: