On 10 January we met with the forestry minister Lord Goldsmith and Defra officials to discuss the skills crisis in the sector, further to their response to our position paper.Read position paper
We were very encouraged with their engagement and sense of urgency, which matched our own. Institute Vice President Geraint Richards introduced the issues, the Minister and his colleagues outlined where work is being done and recognised where more is needed. They are eager to continue the discussion and work on resolving the skills shortage as an increasing number of entrants to the sector are needed to meet the objectives of the England Trees Action Plan, while recognising that the skills challenge is immense.
Discussion focussed on the potential forestry training hub currently going through a scoping phase, the role the Forestry Skills Forum can play and the critical need to get more young people aware of forestry as a career, including cross-government working and how best the Institute can support this
We thank the Minister and his team for their time and look forward to continuing the conversation.