About Us

The Friends voluntary community group was first formed in November 1991, when there was much concern about small public woodland areas being sold off by the government. Some were privatized or clear-felled for the land to be used for other purposes. The Friends supported a plan for “Woodland Park” status to give greater protection for the long-term continuation of Chopwell Wood. This status was achieved towards the end of l993, and the official opening ceremony of Chopwell Woodland Park took place in July 1994.

In 2011 the group once again campaigned against plans to try and sell off public forests, and together with other groups across the country enough support was gathered to force the government to rethink and stop the sale.

Members of the group carry out our work on a voluntary basis – we have no paid employees.  The group became a registered charity in 2010.  Trustees meet at the Forest Classroom in Chopwell Wood, at 7.30 pm usually on the second Wednesday each month, and any member is welcome to attend.

Chopwell Wood has been managed by the Forestry Commission for 90 years. The Friends aim to help develop the educational and recreational uses of the Wood, whilst still conserving the wildlife and their habitats.

Join the Friends and you can put forward your ideas on the future development of the Wood. You can get involved as a volunteer (even without formally joining the group) and help to make these things happen.

With your support we can continue to : –

  • encourage sensitive recreational use and consideration for other users of Chopwell Wood
  • discourage vandalism and abuse of the woodland and reduce litter
  • raise funds for improvements, conservation and restoration projects
  • organise and carry out Conservation Tasks and Recreational/Educational events
  • develop educational resources –  in and around the Forest Classroom
  • contribute to the future development of the Wood through the Forest Design Plan

Items funded by FoCW over the years – Conservation Work; Footpaths Repairs and Improvements to Drainage; Trail for Less-Able; Picnic Tables; Seating Benches/Logs; Sculptures;  Barriers; Litter Clearance and Clean up of Stream Valley areas;  Forest Festivals and other events; Forest Classroom and surrounding area (Meadow, Pond & Nature Trail); Skills Training; Car Park Extension; Railway Trucks & Tubs; Bat Boxes; Red Squirrel Feed; Trapping of Grey Squirrels (done whilst there was still a viable Red Squirrel population); Information Board & Leaflets.

Specific Grant Funding has been used for some Art Work, a Meadow Project, plus History & Heritage work.

Membership subscription details are given on a separate page (this form can also be used to order our History Book and Maps) – see the link below.

>> Click here for further membership details

Please print and post to us at:
Friends of Chopwell Wood, 2 Albert Street, Rowlands Gill, Tyne & Wear, NE39 2JA
Telephone – 01207 542495

Friends members receive three newsletters a year, to keep them informed about what is happening within the Woodland Park.  Information is also displayed on the notice board in the Main Car Park in the Wood.

Please click the link below to download the Friends Of Chopwell Wood Constitution

>> FoCW CONSTITUTION October 2010