Lord Goldsmith will present the prizes at Confor's essay and video awards at Westminster on March 24th.

Six young writers and three film-makers have been shortlisted for #TheFutureIsForestry awards and will be honoured at a ceremony in the Churchill Room at the Houses of Parliament - with three prizes of £500, £250 and £100 awarded in both the essay and video categories.

Lord Goldsmith, the Forestry Minister, will present the awards, along with the sponsors Tilhill Forestry, BSW Timber and the Forestry Commission. New Forestry Commission Chair Sir William Worsley will also help present the prizes.

The subject matter for the essay and video prize was: How can farmers and landowners be motivated to plant more trees to deliver a wide range of benefits, especially mitigating climate change?  The original awards event, planned for November, had to be postponed after the announcement of the December 2019 election meant that Parliament was in recess on the scheduled date. 

Stuart Goodall, CEO of Confor, said: "We were delighted by the response to the awards and look forward to honouring our winners, just slightly later than expected! It is very fitting that Lord Goldsmith will present the awards, as he has shown a real interest and enthusiasm in tackling the challenges to greatly enhanced tree planting - and what needs to be done to meet the ambitous targets set by the new Government."

He added: "The question posed in our competition is now more urgent than ever - we know we have to plant far, far more trees to tackle the damaging impacts of climate change and understanding and addressing the different motivations to plant is even more critical." 

Several MPs who represent the shortlisted entrants will attend the 4-6pm event, following an excellent turn-out of politicians at the first awards ceremony in 2018. Confor members and forestry stakeholders are also welcome to attend. Afternoon tea will be provided. Anyone interested in attending should email Neil Cuthbert - neil@publicaffairs.coop 

The six shortlisted essay-writers are:

  • Nathan Adams, Bangor University Masters student and Focus Consultants; 
  • Ellen Humphrey, Coed Cymru;
  • Jenny Knight, Birmingham Institute of Forest Science; 
  • Alex Malkin, ex-Tilhill Forestry, now Norbury Park, Staffordshire; 
  • Jay Williams, former Masters student, Harper Adams University;
  • Maeve Wright, Anderson Strathern (legal firm).

 The three shortlisted videos are:

  • Chris Court, freelance film-maker; 
  • Dan Haslam and colleagues, Scottish Woodlands Ltd; 
  • Pippa Paterson, former Graduate Rural Surveyor, Davidson and Robertson