Woodland events – code of conduct

When groups visit Bradford District Woodlands, we request that they adhere to the following guidance:

Bradford Forest School Network (BFSN)

We currently grant permission to forest school groups who are members of the BFSN. To find out more and register, visit: http://bradfordforestschools.co.uk/.

Booking Forest School sessions

  • Forest School sessions can be arranged individually as needed, although it is recommended to book a term-long series to ensure availability.
  • Repeat Forest School enquiries must be sent at least four weeks prior to the intended date of the Forest School session.
  • For new or complex events, see the Safety Advisory Group (SAG) guidance from: https://www.bradford.gov.uk/emergencies/emergency-management/safety-advisory-group-sag/
  • Email [email protected] to enquire about location availability or suitability (e.g., If you intend to use a site not previously used for Forest Schools). We can offer guidance on the limitations and potential of various locations.
  • If you wish to organize an on-site meeting to explore potential locations, please contact us, and we can arrange a suitable time. Email [email protected].

Pre-session site checks

  • All the parks and woodlands managed by Bradford Council are accessible to the public, so we cannot guarantee exclusive use of any specific area or exclude others. Therefore, it is essential to include site checks as part of your risk assessment upon arrival.

Code of Conduct

  • Our Woodlands are natural spaces for everyone to enjoy. Please ensure that you leave the area in the same condition as you found it, taking away all equipment brought and any litter with you when you depart.
  • During sessions, please always consider the potential effects on wildlife and the peaceful enjoyment of the woodland by others.
  • Prevent harm to growing plants and trees. Walking in groups can crush low-lying vegetation and compact soil around trees. Please use established pathways within the woodlands and concentrate activities in areas without vegetation. When using ropes, be cautious as they can harm bark and break branches; assess their placement and protection carefully.
  • Fires – certain woodlands are situated within or near moorland regions subject to fire prevention orders during the summer season. These regulations may restrict the use of fires during this period. Campfires that form part of the Forest School experience should be contained and raised from the woodland floor to deter the creation of unauthorized fire sites.
  • Woody material may not be cut for craft or fuel; please bring suitable materials with you for such activities. Fallen deadwood forms part of the woodland ecology and must remain on site. Likewise, foraging for fruit, flowers, and fungi may be appropriate for identification and demonstration purposes where populations allow, but produce should be provided for cooking activities.
  • Any dens or shelters constructed during sessions should be dismantled on completion, with logs and branches returned to the woodland floor.
  • Hunting/shooting/fishing and projectiles are not permitted. Digging and the moving and removal of stone are also prohibited.
  • Be prepared for changing weather conditions and have contingency plans in place for adverse weather.

Note: The event organiser may be liable to pay for any damage to the location site.

Byelaws for Bradford Council Parks and greenspaces – Most Council owned shared spaces apply byelaws that outline what users can and cannot do in these spaces. Download Byelaws for pleasure grounds, public walks and open spaces in the District of Bradford (PDF): https://bradforddistrictparks.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/05/byelawsPDF.pdf

Leave No Trace – Familiarize yourself and your participants with the Leave No Trace principles, which promote responsible outdoor ethics, including minimizing human impact on natural areas. https://wildernessengland.com/sustainability/leave-no-trace/