Woodland already exists in the Chew Valley and is recorded in the National Forest Inventory (NRI). From the NFI data we can calculate the area of each type of woodland and the total which is 945 hectares. The total area of the Chew Valley is 13,821 hectares (excluding the lake) so the woodland area is about 7% of the total. This is below the national UK average of 13% and the average for England which is 10%.
|Woodland Class||Area (ha)||Percentage of CV Area|
|Mixed, mainly conifer||33||0.24|
|Mixed, mainly broadleaved||41||0.30|
Notice that some of these categories don’t necessarily have any trees on them! This figure of 945 hectares refers to “wood-land” (land use) rather than “woodland-cover” (land cover).
Doubling existing woodland cover in the Chew Valley would take it above the English average and bring it in line with the UK average, but that is about it. At the parish level woodland cover varies greatly.
There are of course other types of woodland in the Chew Valley, including small-woods, individual trees and hedgerows. These also add up but we don’t yet have a good estimate of what they are.