Our Woodlands and Countryside Section cares for one of the city’s finest resources in the country’s most wooded city, providing at least 25 million visits to the city’s parks, woodlands and open spaces each year. We also have over 100,000 trees in parks and open spaces meaning we are the most wooded and treed city in Britain (10.4% woodland by area). 

We have 80 ancient woodlands and 180 woods in total, with Ecclesall Woods being the largest ancient semi-natural woodland in South Yorkshire. 

Our roles & responsibilities

Our key roles are:

  • the maintenance, management and development of woodlands and trees in parks and open spaces
  • Community Forestry, involving local people in improving their environment
  • organising educational, interpretative and recreational events
  • protecting and enhancing wildlife and historic landscapes
  • ancient woodland restoration and management
  • offering a Commemorative Tree or Bench Scheme
  • providing a consultancy service to our other services
  • generating income from timber and firewood sales to help manage our woods

Key achievements

Our achievements over the past 5 years include:

  • involving 20,000 people in community events
  • planting over 50,000 new trees
  • consulting with and involving over 100 local community groups across the city in improving their local environment
  • securing additional project funding to the value of £2 million. For example, from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Forestry Commission, Children’s Fund, South Yorkshire Forest Partnership and European Objective 1, amongst many others
  • leading on the declaration of 17 Local Nature Reserves extending over 580ha, protecting some of the best sites for wildlife in the city including Roe Wood and Crabtree Pond, the Gleadless Valley, Woolley Wood and Woodhouse Washlands
  • Forest Stewardship Council certification for our sustainable management of woodlands we own, involving the harvesting of around 4,000 tonnes of timber a year, and supporting the local economy
  • Green Flag management award - Ecclesall Woods and Wheata Woods

Making trees safe

To ensure the trees are safe and do not cause a hazard to the public, maintenance work has to be prioritised on a Health and Safety basis:

  • uprooting and fallen trees
  • structurally unsound trees
  • broken, hanging and fallen branches
  • dead, dying or diseased trees
  • low branches over paths in parks, woodlands or open spaces
  • branches touching property

Trees causing an immediate danger

Any tree or branch that is causing immediate danger to either people or property is treated as an emergency. For example:

  • tree is snapped or blown over
  • tree is rocking - roots are damaged
  • a large branch has broken off or is hanging off
  • tree or branch is blocking highway or footpath
  • tree or branch is blocking access to property
  • tree has fallen on to a house or car

Report problems

Please contact us and if possible, please tell us:

  • what the problem is
  • the exact location of the tree, eg on land behind house number and road name
  • please leave a contact number in case we need to contact you about your enquiry

Parks and Countryside Service

Ask us a question

0114 250 0500

Level 3, West Wing
Moorfoot Building
Sheffield