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Big J

Commercially viable amenity uses for woodland

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Anything that can already be done by the end user for free, is not going to generate you any real revenues. For example, mountain biking. You can come up with a great track through the woods, up and down ravines etc, but they already can and do ride in woodlands for nothing. So you have to make it exceptional AND then have staff there to charge for its use, in order to take any money. The same principle applies to nice things for kids. Lets say you charge £5 per kid. (are you VAT registered, because that £5 just became £4.17 if you are!) Family of 3 or 4 kids will want a discount. Or they won't come because its too expensive and they can walk in plenty of woods for free.

 

Glamping etc can be good revenue spinners, but you have to maintain them, prepare them and clean them for each and every user. You would have to have a changeover day, which means that you or your staff have to commit to being there at that time, week in/week out to do that.

 

I'm not trying to be negative, I'm trying to ensure that you take an objective look at something and try to consider the downsides to things as much as the upsides. As a decent general rule of thumb, ask yourself if YOU would spend the money to do what you want to offer. If you wouldn't spend it, its unreasonable to expect a load of other people to do so really!

 

Rent it out to a paintball company, or something like that, where you don't have to deal with the end user, you have minimal involvement and just pick up your rent. You can't always guarantee they will treat the area as you do though!

 

If it was easy, everyone would be doing it!!   

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20 minutes ago, Conor Wright said:

Or bury people there....

 

Legitimately, of course.

 

Woodland burial sites are becoming more popular.

Yes. Its interesting that one. I looked at that myself a few years ago. As I recall, unless the regulations have changed, the minimum criteria for transporting a body and its burial was on a plank of wood covered by a shroud!

 

But its not just the fees you need to consider, its permanent, ongoing access. You can't bury a load of people and then drive tractors across it and harvest the woodland in a decade! 

 

 

 

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27 minutes ago, Chalgravesteve said:

Yes. Its interesting that one. I looked at that myself a few years ago. As I recall, unless the regulations have changed, the minimum criteria for transporting a body and its burial was on a plank of wood covered by a shroud!

 

But its not just the fees you need to consider, its permanent, ongoing access. You can't bury a load of people and then drive tractors across it and harvest the woodland in a decade! 

 

 

 

It's something I would consider too, there are permanent implications for future uses of the land, however if the wood itself is carefully and respectfully maintained it can still provide a small steady income. maybe I'm odd but the idea of the tree planted over grandad being felled to provide a coffin for a descendant of his has a symbolic circularity to it, In a wholesome kinda way.

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4 hours ago, kevinjohnsonmbe said:

It's a love-fest for bureau-twats and bearded weirdos in hemp shirts and reed platted sandals where the more fanciful and outlandish the idea (especially if presented in a glossy folder and delivered by a DFL type) the greater the probability of securing grant funding for something that is blatantly unsustainable (business wise)

I bet you feel right at home. :001_tt2: Sadly that would probably be the best starting point, work out what's currently the flavour of the month and pocket some 'free' cash.

 

The problem with other ideas is getting people to part with some money. Some other ideas

 

Contact your local bee keeping organisation. People are often looking for a place to site hives and an open but sheltered spot in a woodland can be ideal.

 

Rent out for bushcraft courses / wild camping

 

Fishing ponds?

 

And if you try something and it goes horribly wrong then run a course on the subject.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Chalgravesteve said:

You can't bury a load of people and then drive tractors across it and harvest the woodland in a decade! 

What about low impact coppicing (horse or big J). Reckon you might get away with that? ;)

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1 hour ago, Paul in the woods said:

And if you try something and it goes horribly wrong then run a course on the subject.

I laughed.

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9 hours ago, Big J said:

It's a bit of a hypothetical question, but if you had a woodland and you were looking for ways to diversify the income from it (beyond timber harvesting and carbon offsetting), how would you approach it, and what would you look to pursue? 

 

Hypothetical woodland is young broadleaf (20-30ft), fully deer fenced and private. Located within 20 minutes of a town.

 

I had thought private dog walking, glamping pod, forest nursery etc, but I'd be keen to hear any ideas, if you don't mind me picking your collective brains.

How does one get money for carbon offsetting in the UK? As far as I'm aware, we don't have state run cap and trade.

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Lots of good ideas, and lots of food for thought. 

 

I think whatever uses can be demonstrated as being viable would vary from site to site, depending on the locality. 

 

It's going to be a fairly productive heavy scenario, so things like woodland burial aren't going to be compatible. I'm not keen on paintballing or motorsports as they are disruptive and antisocial, and they make a mess.

 

 

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