In 1996, Professor Chris Smout and Dr Fiona Watson set up the Scottish Woodland History Group with the aim of furthering the study of Scottish woodlands in a way that would be of interest and relevance to foresters, land managers and conservationists today. In 2006 it became part of the Native Woodlands Discussion Group, allowing us to add woodland history and archaeological elements to our events and activities.
We organise an annual one-day autumn conference on woodland history (click on Conference to find out more) and also run occasional archaeological workshops. The annual excursion also includes elements of woodland history, archaeology and past management.
We have found a great deal of benefit comes from the sharing of ideas between woodland archaeologists and historians on the one hand and those concerned with modern woodland ecology, management and policy on the other. While the conference brings together a range of invited speakers from both academic and practical backgrounds, the emphasis is very much on discussion.
The Proceedings of each conference are published and circulated to all NWDG members as pdf files. To see the past proceedings click here.
The 2009 Woodland History Conference. Discussion over lunch in the attractive surroundings of the Birnam Institute. Photo by Alison Averis