Community Nature Norfolk: a Guide

A growing guide of wilding and nature regeneration organisations and projects in Norfolk.

‘Norfolk Community Nature Forum’ is a Partnership of many organisations promoting biodiversity and natural habitats across Norfolk.

This webpage provides a ‘one stop shop’ for communities and groups interested in planting trees, hedges and undertaking other measures to increase  biodiversity and enhance the natural world. 

The Partnership encourages and supports coordinated, informed and effective approaches to improving biodiversity, including the following: 

  • Active planting and creation of other landscape features
  • Passive approaches to natural or assisted regeneration
  • Regenerative and restorative agriculture

The long term aim is to encourage local communities, groups and land owners to get together, provide them with information and advice to assess their local landscapes and help them to develop effective and realistic plans to increase biodiversity and mitigate other impacts of climate change such as flooding.

The following links to information, advice and other support are followed by a table summarising the range of tree and hedge supply schemes that are available. 


Advice, Training, and Practical Help

Current Norfolk Wilding Projects

Small scale gardening for wildlife

Trees and Hedges: Planting Guides

Trees and Hedge Supply Schemes


Advice, Training, and Practical Help

Norfolk Wildlife Trust

NWT supports communities with projects that help wildlife in a number of different ways:

The Conservation Volunteers

Practical environmental volunteering opportunities, conservation skills training and advice and a nationwide network of affiliated community groups including access to detailed technical manuals on conservation skills and techniques, plus insurance cover for affiliated community groups.

Local Tree Warden Networks

Tree Wardens are local tree champions who plant, look after and stand up for the trees in their patch- there are currently networks in Broadland and South Norfolk Districts. 

Norfolk Farming & Wildlife Advisory Group FWAG

FWAG supports farmers, landowners & community groups to manage their land to benefit wildlife & the natural environment.

Community Tree Nursery at Gressenhall Farm and Workhouse

This new project involves growing trees and to inspire others to get growing with activities for school and community groups and information for visitors. The new tree nursery will be the first part of a new environmental hub for Norfolk. To become a volunteer look here.

The Probation Service

Through the Community Payback Scheme the Probation Service may be able to offer practical help through people on probation to support a range of conservation projects. Contact:

Norfolk Rivers Trust
We are dedicated to restoring, protecting and enhancing the water environments of Norfolk, to benefit people and wildlife. We strive to achieve healthy, diverse river and wetland habitats that are rich in biodiversity and resilient to a changing climate, while providing wider benefits including food security, clean water and opportunities for human wellbeing to thrive. Volunteering for the Norfolk Rivers Trust will help to achieve this vision.


Norfolk Biodiversity Partnership

A directory of conservation groups and projects

Norwich Fringe Project

Countryside management partnership, working to look after the countryside around Norwich.

Abbey Farm, Flitcham

For over 30 years Abbey Farm has attempted to conserve wildlife on their farm while producing crops and livestock.

Courtyard Farm, Ringstead

Courtyard Farm is a thriving organic farm in North West Norfolk, producing arable crops to the highest organic standards.

Holkham Estate, North Norfolk

We are custodians of wonderful natural capital and important historic buildings and collections which we will treasure, enhance and revitalise before we hand these on to the next generation.

Wild Ken Hill, Snettisham

Wild Ken Hill is a project to restore nature, fight climate change, and grow healthy food across a coastal farm in West Norfolk engaging people with the natural environment, and working for our local communities.

North Norfolk 110,000 Tree Project

In 2019 North Norfolk District Council declared a Climate Emergency to tackle the devastating impact that increasing global greenhouse gas emissions are causing through climate change. 

Wendling Beck, East Dereham

The Wendling Beck Exemplar Project (WBEP) is a nature restoration project covering just under 2000 acres North of East Dereham in Norfolk. It is a collaboration of 4 farmers, Norfolk Wildlife Trust, Norfolk County Council, Norfolk FWAG and Norfolk Rivers Trust. 

Brecks Fen Edge and Rivers Project  

A new Landscape Partnership scheme, supported by more than 60 local, regional and national groups, to conserve and celebrate the unique heritage of the Norfolk and Suffolk Brecks. They also have a useful Guide to Collaborative Fundraising which can be viewed here.

Breckland Farmers Wildlife Network

A farmer-led group collaborating to create a landscape scale wildlife network. It’s been pointed out that we’re the largest farmland cluster in lowland UK. 


WildEast is a supra-regional nature recovery plan based in East Anglia focused on nature-led ecosystem restoration, regenerative farming, and marine reserve. Their Map of Dreams encourages every backyard, schoolyard, farmyard and industrial yard to pledge 20% back to nature.


Advice on gardening for wildlife

Royal Horticultural Society

An RHS video to learn about wildlife gardening

Gardening For Wildlife – The RSPB

How to make a new build garden for wildlife | The Wildlife Trusts

Find out about wild flower seeds- Grow Wild

Advice on organic growing

Organic Growing – What does it mean? | Garden Organic

Principles of Organic Gardening | Garden Organic

Find out about home composting

Compost at Home – Norfolk Recycles

Home Composting | Garden Organic

Peat-free Gardening

For Peats Sake Website


Planting Guides

You can find out about important wildlife sites here and this is the latest pdf (The pink areas are County Wildlife Sites and zoom in close to find Roadside Nature Reserves in blue) 

See historic maps of the County showing where trees and hedges used to be 

The Norfolk Biodiversity Partnership has published a series of useful ‘Green Infrastructure’ maps and reports

Refer to local landscape character assessments to help you understand the wider landscape context of your planting site/s, as well as landscape features to reinforce, enhance or restore:

North Norfolk 

South Norfolk

West Norfolk

Breckland part 1

Breckland part 2

Broads National Park

Norfolk Green Infrastructure Mapping Project Report

This report advises on hedge planting in different parts of Norfolk.

This site shows where the existing tree and hedge cover in Norfolk is– at a very local level. It is a useful tool to develop plans to add to existing habitats and increase connectivity

This film provides a quick guide on where and what to plant

These links provide more detailed advice on what, where and how to plant and care for your trees:

Woodland Trust

North Norfolk District Council

Tree Council- planting guide

Tree Council- care

This Woodland Trust ‘Woodland Creation Guide’ contains advice on the design and creation of new woodlands.

Local Resource Submission Form

Do you know of a local organisation, community group, or other project that you would like to see added to this guide? Please send it to us for review via the form below:


This table describes a wide range of tree and hedge supply schemes. The Queen’s Green Canopy is a scheme to enable groups to dedicate tree planting to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee in 2022.

Scheme and organisation Who is the scheme open to and when?Webpage
I dig trees (sponsored by ovo energy)-TCVvoluntary and community groups- 2020-2021 applications open
Branching Out- The Tree CouncilSchools, community groups, tree warden networks- applications open until Friday 17th December 2021 (if stock still available)Grants for tree planting – The Tree Council
Free pack of orchard trees or fruiting hedgerow for schools- The Tree CouncilAll nurseries, primary, secondary and special schools both dependent and independent- register for 2021/22 season
Community hedge fund- The Tree CouncilVolunteer tree wardens and community groups- closed for planting 2021/22- check back for 2022/23 
Trees and  hedgerows for wildlife and biodiversity fund – for trees, hedges and orchards, plus wider ecological interventions- The Tree CouncilSchools, community groups and tree warden networks- applications until Friday 17th December (if stock still available) 
Norfolk Coast Partnership Small Grants Fund – Norfolk Coast PartnershipCommunities in the Norfolk coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty- Financial Yer permissions and match funding must be in place before applying
Free Tree packs- The Woodland TrustSchools and community groups- for March 2022 delivery 
More Woods (up to 75% cost subsidised)- The Woodland TrustAll- must plant 500+ trees as woodland on at least half a hectare
More Hedges (up to 75% of cost subsidised)- The Woodland TrustNew hedging must connect with:at least 0.2 hectares of existing or newly planted woodland woodland via established hedgerows within 500m of the new hedge.You must plant at least 100 metres of new hedgerow in a single run.
Trees for your Farm- Agroforestry scheme- The Woodland Trust Farmers- applications between November 2022 – March
UK Tree Planting Project- Carbon FootprintSchools – primary, secondary, further or higher – School Tree Application
One Million Trees for Norfolk: raising awareness, mapping connectivity opportunities, and connecting people with advice and funding.- Norfolk County Council Individuals, community groups, schools, landowners, Parish Councils- 5 year project, range of funding trees 
110,000 Trees- North Norfolk District CouncilAnyone (individuals, landowners, businesses, community groups) in the North Norfolk District Area- until December 2023
CommunityTree Planting Grants-Broadland District Council Grants available for community groups, town & parish councils and charities to plant trees in Broadland.
Projects will need to take place November 2021 to March 2022 and with projects that plant a large proportion of saplings being preferred.
Trees for CitiesSupport organisations to plant small to medium size planting schemes.  Whip planting schemes of between 0.5ha – 7ha (2000 – 2000 native trees).  Also support a limited number of standard tree planting schemes in urban green spaces. Particularly looking to support sites outside of London, suffering from multiple deprivation; coastal areas or those that do not benefit from national or regional tree of woodland initiatives and have low tree canopy cover.
Ongoing applications for 2021-22 season 
Trees for schools and colleges- Tree Appeal Free trees for schools and community groups  The majority of trees are for schools, however community groups can also apply for trees for hedgerows and nature reserves. Also provide spirals, stakes etc. 
Orchard Grants- PTES (People’s Trust for Endangered Species)Aim is to get new trees planted in old orchards or help community orchards be planted with vigorous trees.  Funding for rootstock and grafting materials and orchard trees.  Open to any owner or manager of an existing traditional orchard, or existing or new community orchard. Grants are available for: –Existing orchards in unfavourable condition with missing trees (i.e. gappy) and containing only old trees.-Existing or new orchards with some sort of community access, such as therapy gardens, allotments, or community orchards. Applications for 2022 
UK Community Tree Planting- International Tree Foundation A scheme supporting grassroots community engagement in tree planting. Grants of £1000-£15,000 are awarded to local community projects. Applications open for 2022-23 
Ground Control – Evergreen FundScheme is primarily for larger areas- this can include farm land, parks, hedgerows recreational areas.Apply all year round 
England Woodland Creation Offer- Forestry CommissionTo create new woodlands. Landowners, land managers and public bodies can apply for support to create new woodland, including through natural colonisation, on areas as small as one hectare. Apply all year round
Woodland Carbon Code- Forestry CommissionNot a grant scheme. Instead landowners whose woodland meets the code can sell the carbon sequestered in the woodland in the form of Woodland Carbon Units. 
Urban Tree Challenge Fund- Forestry CommissionOpen to landowners or those who have control over the land.  Must be in an urban area and have some public access.  50% of standard tree costs provided. 
Woodland Carbon Guarantee- Forestry CommissionThe WCaG provides you with the option to sell your captured carbon dioxide to the government for a guaranteed price every 5 or 10 years. No minimum size. 
Woodland Creation Planning Grant –Forestry CommissionMoney to help with cost of planning a wood. Minimum area 10 hectares. Wood can be used for timber production. Plan can be used as a basis of application for further funding. Apply all year round
Natural Flood Management- Environment AgencyFunding is available for tree planting that helps to reduce flood risk. Trees can be a component of natural flood management. 
Free trees- EForests  Free trees to wildlife trusts, community woodland groups and nature reserves.Open for large projects (200+ trees). 
Countryside Stewardship- Forestry CommissionWoodland Creation Grant (WCG): provides payment to supply, plant, weed and protect young trees. Minimum size 3 hectares or 1 hectare if plan is to support leaky wood dams.
Woodland Creation Maintenance Payment (WD1): for those who have planted  woodland under WCG- multi year maintenance grant.
Woodland Tree Health: two elements; restoration provides support for restocking woodland after felling due to disease and Improvement is support for removal of diseased trees and rhododendron.
Woodland Improvement (WD2 and capital items):to improve the biodiversity of woodland and/or make it more resilient to climate change.
Woodland Management Planning Grant (WMPG): a one-off payment to create a 10 year Woodland Management Plan which is UK Forestry Standard (UKFS) compliant. 

Countryside Stewardship Various grants for tree and hedge planting
Countryside Stewardship- hedge plantingBN11- hedge planting

Norfolk Community Nature Forum comprises:

Active Norfolk

Brecks Fen Edge and Rivers Project

Community Action Norfolk

Council for the Protection of Rural England (Norfolk)

Edible East CIC

Flagship Housing Group

Garden Organic

Great Yarmouth Borough Council

Groundwork East

Natural England

Norfolk and Waveney Integrated Care System

Norfolk Association of Local Councils

Norfolk Coast Partnership

Norfolk Community Health and Care NHS Trust and Norfolk and Waveney STP

Norfolk County Council Environment and Public Health

Norfolk Farming and Wildlife Advisory Group

Norfolk Green Care Network

Norfolk Ponds Project

Norfolk Wildlife Trust

North Norfolk District Council

Norwich City Council

Probation Service

Queens Jubilee Canopy (Norfolk Lord Lieutenancy)

Royal Society for the Protection of Birds

South Norfolk & Broadland District Councils

The Broads Authority

The Conservation Volunteers

The Environment Agency

The Forestry Commission

The Matthew Project

The Tree Council

The National Trust

The Woodland Trust

Voluntary Norfolk

Wild Anglia

Wild East

Wild Ken Hill