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Upper Wharfedale Photograph by Whitfield Benson

Woodland Opportunities Map

A tool to help farmers and land managers to identify potential sites for woodland creation


Ambitious targets, both nationally and within the Yorkshire Dales National Park, mean the Authority is committed to working with local land managers to increase the amount of woodland cover across the park, and to ensure that woodland is only planted in suitable places. The map has been created to help landowners and land managers identify potentially suitable areas for planting.

In this instance, woodland creation includes native woodland planting, natural colonisation, wood pasture, scrub as well as hedgerows and individual trees. Woodland planting can also form part of a wider mosaic of habitats and even in potentially suitable sites, there is a range of what would be best type of planting for that particular site.

Find out how to use the map in our guidance document here.

The Woodland Opportunities Map is split into three categories: –
• Category 1: Areas where woodland creation is unlikely to be suitable;
• Category 2: ‘Sensitive’ areas that might suit woodland creation but are likely to require more detailed checks and possibly survey work to ensure other important habitats or species would not be damaged;
• Category 3: Areas where woodland creation is likely to be suitable.


Please bear in mind that the map cannot provide a definitive answer and it should not be used in isolation. There are many other factors which need to be considered when making land management decisions, many of which cannot be mapped. Please note:
• A parcel of land being in category 3 does not absolutely guarantee that woodland planting is appropriate.
• A full land assessment and consultation process will always need to be carried out before any planting can be approved.
Our guidance document should be used alongside the map. It explains how to use the maps and provides links to some useful supporting documents.

Launch the map here 


IMPORTANT: The majority of land represented on this map is under private ownership. Members of the public interested in visiting these areas should follow public rights of way and obey the rules and regulations on Open Access land unless they have permission from the landowner.

Have a comment?

We hope you find the map useful. However, if you notice something doesn’t work, or have any ideas on how it can be improved, please email us at,uk

You can also contact us on this email if you would like advice on any aspect of woodland management or creation including funding and site design.

And not forgetting…..

Our thanks go to Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty for their advice with creating the map.