Live updates

Felling to undermine years of conservation work

Years of conservation work by the Woodland Trust will be undermined by the felling of trees at Wentwood Forest.

Restoration work the charity began in 2006, involving the gradual removal of conifers to allow native broadleaf trees and characteristic ancient woodland flora and fauna to return, will be destroyed.

forest
Large swathes of Wentwood Forest are to be felled Credit: Natural Resources Wales
map
Wentwood Forest Credit: ITV Wales

Much of Wentwood Forest was planted with confiers in the 1940s and 50s as a means of providing fast-growing wood for building. This has led to the decline of many species and unique characteristics of ancient woodland. Larch trees are part of attempts to restore the forest to its natural state.

forest
Large swathes of Wentwood Forest are to be felled Credit: Natural Resources Wales

Advertisement

Larch tree disease expected to spread further

Wales' largest ancient forest is to have many of its trees felled due to a fungus-like disease. Hundreds of acres of Wentwood Forest near Newport will be cut down. It's thought that the disease will continue to spread in the coming months and further felling will be required.

Felled trees
Trees will be felled in Wentwood Forest Credit: PA
Felled trees
Trees will be felled in Wentwood Forest Credit: PA
Felled trees
Trees will be felled in Wentwood Forest Credit: PA

Wentwood tree felling is "serious and devastating"

Natural Resources Wales says it will spend £500,000 immediately to try to stop the Phytophthora ramorum tree disease from spreading further.

An extra £2 million will be provided for carrying out future work.

This is the most serious and devastating action we’ve had to take on our estate because of tree disease and it again highlights both the need to tackle tree disease and the importance of restoring as much of our damaged ancient woodland as possible to make it more resilient in decades to come.

Following the felling the Trust believes that the best approach is to immediately replant the wood with native broadleaf trees such as oak and cherry in the hope of preserving woodland specialist plants that only thrive when sheltered by tree canopy.

– Barry Embling, Woodland Trust

Hundreds of acres of Wentwood Forest to be felled

Trees in Wales' largest area of ancient woodland - Wentwood Forest near Newport - are being felled due to a devastating disease.

The Woodland Trust says larches in have been attacked by Phytophthora ramorum, which can damage and kill trees.

Work has already begun to remove 500 acres of the woodland.

The disease is already affecting thousands of larch trees elsewhere in Wales, the South West of England, Ireland and Scotland.

Advertisement

Today's top stories