ICF Welcomes Professional Recognition in Glastir Scheme

ICF Welcomes Professional Recognition in Glastir Scheme

The Institute of Chartered Foresters (ICF) has welcomed recent changes to the Glastir Woodland scheme, which recognise ICF membership. A new set of terms and conditions for the registration of Glastir Woodland Management Planners in Wales requests membership of ICF, or a similar professional body, and adherence to the ICF Code of Conduct.

Glastir Woodland offers grants under the Rural Development Programme, for operations like woodland creation and restocking, particularly in areas affected by pests and diseases. The management plan is the prerequisite to funding under Glastir Woodland schemes, and applicants to any Glastir Woodland scheme must use a Registered Glastir Woodland Management Planner to prepare and submit their plan.

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ICF Vice President David Edwards FICFor welcomes changes to the Glastir scheme. 

ICF Vice President David Edwards FICFor welcomed the news of this change to the Glastir Woodland Management Planner terms and conditions. He said:

“The news that Welsh Government requires their approved Glastir Management Planners to be members of a professional body like ICF is recognition of the professional standards maintained by ICF. Approved Management Planners are the only individuals permitted to prepare applications for the Welsh Government’s Glastir Woodlands scheme for creation of new woodlands, woodland restoration and hopefully for a soon-to-open scheme for management of existing woodlands. This earned recognition is a well-deserved endorsement of current members and a welcome encouragement for others to join ICF and contribute to expanding Wales’ professional network.”

Deputy Minister for Farming and Food, Rebecca Evans, recently announced the opening of a short expression of interest window for Glastir Woodland Restoration. The scheme supports re-planting of woodland where ramorum disease of larch has become a threat, and the application window will run until midnight, 13 November 2015. Rebecca Evans commented:

“It is really important that when replanting larch woodland, we get the right tree in the right place for the right reason, to increase the resilience of the woodland to climate change and future disease threats. That is why we require woodland owners applying to the scheme to prepare a forest management plan drawn up by a listed Forest Management Planner with professional qualifications, and is consistent with the UK Forestry Standard which is the benchmark for sustainable forest management.

“I’m pleased that our approach to planning for woodlands has been welcomed by professional bodies and I would like to thank them for helping us to ensure high standards are met.”

Sonia Winder MICFor, Forest Manager at Tilhill Forestry, was one of the first Chartered Members of ICF to be registered as a Glastir Woodland Management Planner, under the scheme’s new terms and conditions. She said: “Welsh Government cites the ICF’s professional and ethical standards as being essential for every Management Planner. These are not aspirations, they are fundamental standards which we should apply in our whole professional lives.

“It is up to us as Chartered Foresters to demonstrate that the management of the private woodland estate in Wales is exemplary, sustainable, and that the legacy of a quality timber stock left to us by the visionary foresters of the past, isn’t being squandered now.”

For further information about Glastir Woodland, visit www.wales.gov.uk/glastir

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