Hole Farm – Your future local woodland

In 2021 National Highways bought Hole Farm, a 95 hectare arable site in Great Warley near Brentwood, Essex. It sits alongside the M25 at the northern end of the proposed Lower Thames Crossing.

Hole Farm: Draft design

The draft design for the Hole Farm community woodland is now available for public consultation. After two open days at Hole Farm where we had members of the public review the design in person, we would now like to give people the opportunity to review the design online.

Please take a look at the draft design below and email us at hole.farm@forestryengland.uk with any comments or edits you would like to see.

Review the draft design here

While the whole site will be a community woodland, it will also serve other purposes for the Lower Thames Crossing. Planting on some of the site will provide compensation for the loss of ancient woodland and replacement public open space for Folkes Lane Woodland. We are also considering using other areas of the site as environmental compensation to address the environmental impacts of the Lower Thames Crossing; a consultation on this starts on 12 May.

We want the site to become an inspiring place for the local community to enjoy and explore. We are about to start planning how the woodland could look and feel, and what facilities it might offer for local people.

Next steps

This was the start of the process, and there will be more opportunities to give your feedback and shape the future of the site.

Hole Farm timeline

The next step will be to review the responses to the questionnaire and share our findings with you. There will then be a series of focus workshops on key topics to give an opportunity to provide more detailed feedback.

Hole Farm, looking south-east
Hole Farm, looking south-east
Hole Farm artist impression
Hole Farm artist impression
Watch our video: Environmental sustainability: A new community woodland in Essex
Map showing the location of Hole Farm along the Lower Thames Crossing route
Map showing the location of Hole Farm along the Lower Thames Crossing route

About Forestry England

Forestry England manage the nation’s forests. For over 100 years, Forestry England have been growing, shaping and caring for over 1,500 of our nation’s forests for the benefit and enjoyment of all, for this generation and the next. They have built walking, running and cycling trails, supplied England’s largest amount of sustainably-sourced timber, and conserved the habitats of thousands of plants and animals. Forests improve the health and wellbeing of everyone and, with careful planning and expert management, our forests will continue to thrive. They help to offset carbon emissions, restore eco-systems and provide people of all ages and abilities with fresh air and spaces to enjoy. Forestry England are always thinking beyond today, planning and planting forests that will help create a sustainable future.

Find out more about Forestry England.