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Special Interest Groups

The Institute’s Special Interest Groups aim to represent the needs and interests of different areas in the sector and facilitate increased knowledge exchange. They work to provide relevant CPD and training for members around their areas of expertise, all whilst working towards a shared understanding of what professionalism means across forestry and arboriculture.


The Nurseries Special Interest Group aims to raise the profile of forest nurseries, from commercial to amenity and everything in between, to the wider Institute membership through internal promotion and partner organisations. The group want the nursery sector to feel heard and be supported, and is also working towards professionalising the nursery sector and growing the pool of professional nursery staff. Through building relationships between the nursery and forest sector, the disconnect with the wider industry will be reduced by increasing the understanding of nursery sector practices, systems and constraints.

Harvesting & Marketing

The Harvesting & Marketing Special Interest Group seeks to represent the needs and interests of the timber sector and facilitate increased knowledge exchange. They want to provide relevant CPD and training for members around health and safety implications, sector practices, systems and constraints, all whilst working towards a shared understanding of what quality looks like. The group wants to help the Institute foster relationships between commercial operations and the rest of the sector. By raising the profile of the harvesting sector and awareness of the Institute within the wider timber sector, it is hoped that the professional pool will grow.


The Environmental Special Interest Group have raised the issue of polarisation within the woodland sector, with it never been a more important time for jobs and our roles within nature and climate. The group want to support the sector with increased collaboration, with a wider opportunity for ecosystem services and broader CPD opportunities, to address the uncertainty and confusion on this in the sector. They aim to create a shared space for learning and experience, with a particular focus on early career professional development.

Lea Brandes (Chair)
Operations Manager – Forestry England

Martin Glynn FICFor CEnv
Independent Consultant

Chris Hardy MICFor 
Head of Science Centre – Forest Research

Kasia Lee MICFor
Biosecurity and Health & Safety Officer – Forestry England

Lorenza Pozzi
Nurseries Data, Insights and Liaison Officer – Forestry Commission

Josh Roberts MICFor
Innovation Manager – Forestry and Land Scotland

Keith Sacre MICFor
Arboriculture & Urban Forestry Director – Barcham Trees

Imam Sayyed
Head of Plant & Seed Supply – Forestry England

Ed Midmore MICFor
Site Manager (North West Wales) – Woodland Trust

Clint Parker
Arboricultural Team Leader/Tree Nursery Manager – Warwickshire County Council

Amy Shepherd
Sales – Forestart

Tim Peters
Forestry Teaching Associate – Bangor University

Alistair Yeomans MICFor
Independent Consultant – Sylva Foundation

Iwan Lloyd-Williams MICFor (Chair)
Director – DSH Wood

Tom Coates MICFor
Area Supply Manager – James Jones & Sons

Cat Kent
Woodlands Manager – Castlemilk & Corrie Estates

Emma Grey
Operations Manager – Scottish Forestry

Andrew Powers MICFor
Head of Land Management – Forestry England

Donald Beaton MICFor
Investment Manager, Harvesting – Gresham House

John Deakin MICFor (Chair)
Head of Trees and Woodlands – National Trust

Justin Mumford FICFor
Director of Consultancy – Nicholsons

Gordon Pfetscher FICFor
Head of Estate – Woodland Trust

Luke Barley MICFor
Trees and Woodland Adviser – National Trust

Dr Andrew Weatherall MICFor
Principal Policy Officer (Woodlands and Forestry) – RSPB

Wendy Joss
Specialist Advisor Forest Planning – Natural Resources Wales

Sonia Winder MICFor CEnv
Forest Manager – Tilhill

Dr Neil Strong MICFor
Biodiversity Strategy Manager – Network Rail

Huw Davies FICFor
Principal Adviser Funding Development Team – Natural England

Arboriculture and Urban Forestry Steering Group

The Arboriculture and Urban Forestry Steering Group is interested in raising the profile of arboriculture careers and providing CPD opportunities to aid the development of professionals transitioning into the sector and recent graduates.

Amelia Williams MICFor (Chair)
Arboricultural Consultant & Director – The Arboricultural Company

Dean Bell
Doctoral Researcher, Urban Forestry – University of the West of England

Terry Crick MICFor
Director – Apex Arb Training Ltd

Sam Hobson MICFor
Director – SEED

Russell Horsey MICFor
Director – Goetre Villa

Graham Owen MICFor
Senior Engineer – Network Rail

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