Our Commemorative woodland at Erddig

A view of the back of the house at Erddig, Wales with the parterre in front.

We're proud to be the location of one of Wales’ new commemorative woodlands that will stand as living memorials to those who have sadly lost their lives during the Covid-19 Pandemic.

We will be providing nine hectares of land at Hafod, on the southern edge of our Erddig estate to create a beautiful, safe and accessible woodland where people can visit, remember loved ones and spend time in nature.

Natural Resources Wales has identified a second woodland site in South Wales and a third is to be confirmed in South East Wales.

We’re privileged to be working in partnership with the Welsh Government and Natural Resources Wales to support the commemorative woodlands project.

A woodland to remember

The new woodland will be for remembrance and reflection, but also to give a future green space for everyone to continue that much needed, beneficial connection with the natural world for ever.

The woodland will have a theme of ‘resilience’ and will play an important role in supporting nature’s recovery and our fight against the climate crisis. The tree species we will use will be able to adapt to the threats of pests, diseases and a changing climate, and alongside them we also plan to create other vital habitats for wildlife such as pondscapes, hedgerows and meadows, supporting nature’s recovery and our fight against the climate crisis.  

The location of our new commemorative woodland with Johnstown to the west
A map showing the new site of Erddig's new commemorative woodland
The location of our new commemorative woodland with Johnstown to the west

Our vision is for the woodland space to be commemorative in its entirety and we do not intend to have individually dedicated trees. This is because woodlands are dynamic, living systems that are actively managed. In order for them to thrive we will sometimes need to remove trees for safety and to make space for the woodland to mature. 

As part of the planned wider engagement, we will be asking for suggestions for other ways individuals could be remembered at the woodland. We hope to share more on this soon.

Help us shape Erddig’s commemorative woodland

Over the coming months, we will be working in partnership with the Welsh Government, Natural Resources Wales, the community and stakeholders, to explore ideas about how this special place can benefit local residents, visitors and nature.

We plan to hold planting days later in the year and further engagement opportunities at Erddig in the coming months. More details about these days will be shared here and on our Wales social media pages.

Commemorative Woodland drop-in feedback sessions

On Wednesday 30 March and Saturday 2 April we're inviting our community partners, families and individuals affected by the pandemic, and those interested in helping us shape this special woodland to come along to a feedback session. Just drop in at Erddig at any time between 11am and 1pm.

If you can't make a session but would like to share your thoughts and ideas, please complete our online survey by following the link below.

We hope that the woodland site can officially open to the public next year.

Establishing a woodland

There are several factors that we need to consider as we design the site:

  • Visual – ensuring the design is appropriate to the local setting
  • People – providing a space that is accessible to all
  • Environmental – designing with species that are good for nature and climate

As the woodland is a natural environment and we will be planting saplings, it will be several years until it is established. However, once core works have been finished in 2022, the site will be a public space and we can all watch the woodland grow together.

As with all new woodland creation, the commemorative woodland at Erddig will be subject to the necessary approval processes. It is important to ensure there are no adverse environmental impacts, which includes consideration of the impacts on local communities, and that any sensitivities are recognised and treated appropriately. All our plans will follow the procedure for Environmental Impact Assessment, to ensure the right people are consulted and the new woodlands have a positive impact on the local environment and local communities. The new woodlands will be managed to meet the UK Forestry Standard and UK Woodland Assurance Standard.

The commemorative woodland project forms part of the Welsh Government’s National Forest Programme. The National Forest will comprise a network of publicly accessible woodlands under high quality management across Wales, to include both new and existing woodlands. Community engagement will be at the forefront of the development of National Forest sites to help ensure the woodlands provide opportunities for recreation, education, and exercise and in this case, also a place for reflection to remember those lost to Covid-19.

Commemorative woodland in Carmarthenshire

For information about the Commemorative Woodland in Carmarthenshire, please visit Natural Resources Wales’ website to have your say.